¥10 Yen Shops Prove Deflation in Japan?

The Asia Times Online shows what 20 years of Japan’s economic policies have brought us: Severe deflation.

Now, we have ¥10 yen shops selling daily items and doing brisk business in Japan. Ten yen is about 8 cents. The ¥10 yen shops sell loss leader items to attract the customers but the other items sell for about ¥88 each, so they even beat out the ¥100 yen shops.

¥10 yen shop in Yoyogi in Tokyo!

The store that accomplishes all of this is called the Recycle Garden and you can see their webpage here.

As the Asia Times Online reports:

At Recycle Garden, 10 yen buys the customer everyday items such as chopsticks, kitchen goods, nail-scissors, hand sanitizers, or air fresheners. A colored plastic hair clasp is also

10 yen. In the Kawasaki shop alone, the product lineup consists of about 1,000 items at 10 yen, with the number of goods totaling around 30,000. It’s all there.

Surprisingly, most of those products are made in Japan, not in China, Vietnam or Cambodia, from where usually cheaper and lower-quality goods flow into Japan.

How does Recycle Garden achieve these super low prices? Interestingly, they buy up goods from bankrupt shops and other bankrupt ¥100 stores!

The article continues:

The mechanism is this: amid an increasingly fierce pricing war among neighborhood retail shops such as 100-yen convenience stores, Recycle Garden makes bulk purchases of those goods from bankrupt shops and firms as from deceased manufacturing and wholesale merchants. In most cases, on hearing the news about a bankruptcy, Recycle Garden workers dash to the failed firms with large dump trucks, and buy up and take away immediately to their chain store a vast amount of goods.

“We are cutting prices to the bone,” said Tadafumi Fukuda, 41, manager at Recycle Garden’s Kawasaki outlet. “Since we also sell other items at 88 yen and above, 10-yen goods serve as a crowd puller.” The number of customers visiting the shop has increased 20% from a year ago, when the shop started to sell 10-yen goods, he said.

Of course, if the economy were good, then they could never do this business plan of cannibalising other discount shops, but as long as the Japanese government keeps up with the stupid policies that we’ve had over these past twenty years, then it certainly won’t be just, “Japan’s Two Lost Decades” It will certainly turn into, “Japan’s Lost Three Decades.”


Keywords:  ¥10 yen shop,  ¥100 yen shop, deflation, Recycle Garden, Marketing Japan, Mike Rogers, Mike in Tokyo Rogers