Zara denies its Hong Kong stores were closed due to protests
By Rachel Chang and Jinshan Hong - Sep 4th, 09:37
Fast-fashion company Zara says store closures in Hong Kong were not related to anti-Beijing protests in the city, after speculation on Chinese social media that the retailer’s employees were supporting the demonstrators.
“Zara has never made any comments or undertaken any actions related to a strike in Hong Kong,” the company said in a post on its Weibo account on Monday.
“Zara does not back a strike and supports ‘one country, two systems’,” the post said, referring to a general strike called by unions as part of the protests, and China’s policy for governing Hong Kong.
The denial comes as multinational businesses become ensnared in the volatile conflict that has morphed from a protest against an extradition law into a broader challenge to Beijing’s authority in the city.
Cathay Pacific Airways, Hong Kong’s biggest carrier, faced heavy pushback from China after its staff joined the demonstrations, while HSBC Holdings to PWC have been the subject of online speculation over their positions on the protests, which have rocked the former British colony for almost three months.
Zara, owned by Spanish fashion conglomerate Inditex, seems to have been targeted after Chinese social media users noticed several of its Hong Kong stores were closed on Monday. Speculation spread that it was because staffers were taking part in the general strike.
A company representative who answered Zara’s Hong Kong hotline on Tuesday confirmed that all of its stores on Hong Kong island were shut on Monday, except one, but declined to give a reason for the closures. Most of Zara’s stores in Hong Kong’s Kowloon district were open on Monday, she said.
State-run tabloid Global Times said in an editorial that regardless of the reason for its store closures, Zara should not “broadcast any suspicious signals like this at a time when Chinese society is being troubled” by the incidents in Hong Kong.
A spokesperson for Inditex China did not immediately respond to requests for comment.Business Live
Brands leave R34 bn in lost sales on the e-commerce table - report
22/09/2019 - 13:19
By 2021, over 20-million South Africans will shop online.
AB InBev to float Asian business in 2019’s second biggest IPO
22/09/2019 - 10:14
AB InBev will kick off a second attempt to spin off its Asian business in Hong Kong with the launch of an initial public offering (IPO) worth up to $6.6bn that could be the world’s second-largest flotation in 2019.
Samsung and KOO win big at the 21st Sunday Times Top Brands Awards
20/09/2019 - 15:12
Samsung and KOO have been announced as South Africa’s Overall Favourite Brands, winning the Grand Prix Awards in the respective Business and Consumer sectors of the 21st Sunday Times Top Brands Survey.
Retail sales remain muted with consumers under pressure
20/09/2019 - 14:31
Retail sales for July marginally declined to 2 percent year on year as sales growth continued to reflect a muted demand in South Africa, with consumers’ discretionary income under strain.
Pick n Pay rolls out R4 lifetime reusable bag made from recycled plastic bottles
20/09/2019 - 14:14
Pick n Pay is rolling out its new budget green People n Planet reusable bag nationally after a successful trial with customers earlier this year. The bag is expected to be in all stores by mid-October.