About Grameen UNIQLO
In 2010, UNIQLO started a social business* in Bangladesh with Grameen Healthcare Trust.
We produce truly great clothing in Bangladesh and sell it at affordable prices for the poor. All sales proceeds are reinvested in social businesses. Local residents are able to improve the quality of their lives and achieve financial independence by operating their own businesses under this system, which is intended to address social challenges through the production and sales of clothing in Bangladesh.
*Social business: A new business structure focused on civic concerns, such as eradicating poverty; advocated by Muhammad Yunus, who received the Nobel Peace Prize along with Grameen Bank for their efforts in Bangladesh.
*Shareholders can only recover their original investment and cannot claim any additional profit. Any profits generated are reinvested in the company for expansion and improvement.
About the Social Business of Grameen UNIQLO
Social Business Structure
The market price of one T-shirt in Bangladesh is approximately 60 cents. We design products while stepping up marketing efforts on site in order to deliver items of clothing to people in Bangladesh that are of the best possible quality at an affordable price.
We purchase low-price, high-quality materials through partnership contracts with clothing fabric manufacturers in Bangladesh.
Production in Local Factories
It is important not to compromise quality even at low prices. We consign production to local factories that agree with the concept of social business and our own standards drawn from the quality management expertise UNIQLO has cultivated.
Face-to-Face Sales by Grameen Ladies
Grameen Ladies, who are working toward financial independence through loans from Grameen Bank, handle sales. The women, who generally come from disadvantaged rural areas, sell door to door in rural areas or use their own homes as stores, where they explain product features and sell clothing in a warm and cordial setting. Products are sold on consignment with paid commission based on sales.
Purchasing and Wearing
Since the prices of our T-shirts are 20% to 30% higher than local market prices, it is vitally important for local consumers to be aware of their quality and durability and understand that the prices are reasonable. We hope they wear the clothing for a long time and appreciate the difference in product quality.
Reinvestment of Profit
Profits from the sales of the clothes will be reinvested in other social businesses. The goal is to manufacture and sell 100,000 items in the first year and one million by the third year. Because Bangladeshis are developing the business on their own, they have a direct hand in generating job opportunities, improving their lives and encouraging each other to move toward financial independence.