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Uniqlo Wants To Overtake Zara as Biggest Brand in the World

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Uniqlo parent company Fast Retailing has been hard at work in Asia, opening a staggering average of two new stores each week, the Wall Street Journal reports. All that ribbon-cutting has positioned Uniqlo the biggest apparel chain in Asia—which sounds impressive until you remember the company's stated goal of becoming the biggest retailer in the world by 2020.

At a news conference yesterday, Chief Executive Tadashi Yanai restated his ambition to take over Zara as the number one apparel brand in the world. "We will become the overwhelming No. 1 brand in Asia, and we will continue our strategy of massive store launches and expand our territory," he said. "Of course we want to become No. 1 in the U.S., if we can." Uniqlo has a long way to go—Fast Retailing currently has only half the sales of Zara parent company Inditex.

After the jump, a look at how Uniqlo stacks up against fast-fashion competitors Gap, H&M, and Zara.

Uniqlo: Japan, 1984
Gap: US, 1969
H&M: Sweden, 1947
Zara: Spain, 1975

2011 Revenue:
Uniqlo: $8.7 billion
Gap: $5.7 billion
H&M: $15.1 billion
Zara: $11.4 billion

Uniqlo: 12
Gap: 41
H&M: 44
Zara: 82

Global stores:
Uniqlo: 1,000
Gap: 1,587
H&M: 2,352
Zara: 1,631

Numbers based on a June 2012 article in FastCompany.
· Uniqlo Sets Goal: No. 1 [WSJ]
· Is Uniqlo Having a Fashion Identity Crisis? [Racked]
· Uniqlo Will Avoid Middle America, Los Angeles for Now [Racked]
· Fast-Fashion Face off: Here's How Uniqlo Compares to Zara, Gap, and H&M [Racked]