In 1970, Issey Miyake, the Japanese designer whose works had been appreciated in the Western world, decided to return to his hometown, Tokyo. His determination was clear: to revolutionize Japanese fashion. He founded the Miyake Design Studio, a high-end producer of women’s apparels and accessories. Even though the trend was going toward Western designs, Miyake’s creation was welcomed by national fashion scene. Just a year later, the brand’s first collection was featured in New York City, and, later on, Paris, and so he opened the first overseas store at Place du Marche Saint-Honore, Paris.
In 2016, the brand « Issey Miyake » has been adored by millions of fashionistas around the world. Known for unique signatures and disruptive creativity, Issey Miyake has marked its success in global spotlights as well as international hearts. While top luxury brands in the world have their heritages set in Europe or the United States for several decades and more, Issey Miyake is one of those special few from Asia that could make it on the global stage, in less than 45 years, and without any support from outside investors.
The case study discusses key success factors that contributed to Issey Miyake’s growth and international reputation. It explores and evaluates the challenging paradox of emerging luxury brands where country-of-origin plays a critical role in the acceptance and legitimacy of a brand. The case offer the scope to analyse whether the brand success is sustainable or it could only be a fad.
SOM, A. (2016). Issey Miyake Inc.: From Guardian of Oriental Design to Something Different? ESSEC Business School.