Matsushita plans own network to bypass high-street retailers

Matsushita, the Japanese consumer electronics giant which owns the Panasonic and Technics brand, is believed to be planning a network of retail outlets in the UK to bypass established retailers such as Dixons and Comet.

It would follow in the footsteps of rivals such as Sony, which has built a chain of 90 stores throughout the UK selling Sony products exclusively. The stores are run on a franchise basis.

There are already two dedicated Panasonic shops in the UK which are owned by the retailer.

Earlier this month Matsushita announced it would open a chain of 3,000 retail outlets in China to sell only its own products. The company’s success in Japan is largely because of a network of 20,000 “corner shops” selling its products exclusively.

“Panasonic has been discussing this idea for at least two years,” says one source. “But nothing has happened yet. It believes this is a good idea but that it will be difficult to implement.”

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