Sakuraya closing business to be a part of Bic Camera

By TERRY - Last updated: 木曜日, 3月 4, 2010 - Save & Share - Leave a Comment

  Sakuraya, one of the biggest  electronics retail store chains in Japan closed business by the end of  this February, and its facilities have become a part of  BEST DENKI CO., LTD. (/ベスト電器) whose primary shareholder is Bic Camera, another big electronics store chain. 


   Sakuraya  opened its business in 1946 and has steadily expanded its scale of  business and became very popular chain nationwide.  Yet recently the sales could not increase as before and Sakuraya had become a subsidiary of  BEST DENKI, still it  had no power as to keep vying with other  competitors these years.  Thus  Sakuraya’s  chain stores closed one  after another in this February and  by the 28th  all of  its 15 stores closed business.

Perosonally, I was kind of shocked at this news, for  I was a frequent customer of  Sakuraya  since I had been a student.  I often bought video games, such as  Dragon Quest series and Final Fantasy series, which I have referred to on previous pages here sometimes. Actually, I clearly remember that , at Sakuraya  Shinjyuku store , I bought DQ 1 and 2 of the original version of  FC (Nintendo Family Computer)  23 years ago when I was a graduate student.   The fact that those who were born when I bought DQ and FF have become adults and still those series are around and popular  over generations even among current children is amazing , and such  situations are  like the stories of those fantasy gamea of  ” maginificent  chronicles” .

Therefore, 10 days before the closure  of  Sakuraya in Center Street of Shibuya, I went there and bought some video games including FF 13 the newest title which I wrote about .     These items were very inexpensive due to the store-closing sale, which made me a little happy. There were a lot of customers even on that day,which showed the remaining popularity of Sakuraya.

And on the Feb.28th, technically speaking “the final day ” of  Sakuraya,  I happened to be in Shinjyuku, and dropped in “ex” Sakuraya Higashiguchi Ekimae-ten (/さくらや東口店, Sakuraya Store in front of  the East Exit of  Shinjyuku Station), which now has become a Bic Camera’s store. That building had been a symbol of the east exit area of the station, and  the big billborad of “さくらや” (Sakuraya)was still set at its top. Yet the building’s  first floor had a new sign board of  “ビックカメラ オープン “(Bic Camera Open)and that  one building has both boards of  “Sakuraya” and “Bic Camera”  at the same time for a while, which represents this turning point, is interesting to reflect our dynamic electronics market. 

However, Sakuraya Higashiguchi had already been closed on 25th, so Bic Camera had already started its business there. And I found B1 floor was still under construction and went down to the B2 floor of  “games & DVD, Bluray softwares”. I bought some games and movie DVDs thete in token of my visit to that new store of Bic Camera. And Iasked the staffer there when that new store had opened. The two staffers there said, ” We opened this store the day before yesterday(26th; the next day of the closure of  Sakuraya Higashiguchi) , but as for this floor of games and DVDs, we just opened today !  And B1 which is going to be opened on Mar. 2nd will be a floor of wines. ”   So, being  surprised to learn I had just done shopping on the very opening day of the game floor of the store, I thanked them saying ,” I will come again! ” . Their reply of  “We are all looking forward to your future orders. We are  much obliged to you! ” was comfprtable in my ears…  I am also a frequent customer of  Bic Camera which is good.

The history of one popular electronics store chain has ended, which has happily been passed over to the hand of  other companies. Thus I hope to keep seeing  energy of  such businesses and  going-on survival of  their future along with warm supports of  passionate valued customers.

Posted in Old and New Cultural Scenes in Japan • • Top Of Page
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