World's biggest Hello Kitty store opens in May

$15 million concept store in Istanbul will measure 3,000 square metres.
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The world's biggest Hello Kitty store is opening in Atasehir, Istanbul, Turkey, on May 29th.

Hello Kitty World is the brand's first concept store. Brand owner Sanrio and Peritozu Company have invested $15 million into the 3,000 square metre location.

Max Licensing also teamed up with Sanrio for the store.

The store will stock everything from motorcycles to bags, accessories, shoes, fashion products, diamonds, beddings and more, as well as other official products offerings.

The store will launch with a private party dedicated to press, VIP and special guests, where the asian star DJ Hello Kitty will perform live for the first time in Europe.

Hello Kitty, the character created almost 39 years ago by the Japanese gift and plush Company Sanrio, has $6 billion in gross retail sales, with 300 licensees in Japan alone and over 1,300 licensees worldwide.

“We are excited to be in Turkey” said Sanrio’s CEO Kunihiko Tsuji. “Sanrio’s gross sales in Europe and the Middle East are approximately 30 per cent of global sales. This is a very serious figure. 

"Sanrio's corporate philosophy is 'Small Gift, Big Smile' and we hope through our partnership and project in Turkey we will be able to deliver more happiness all over Europe and the Middle East.

Diana Magarino, President of Max Licensing, Sanrio’s representative in Turkey, added: "As Sanrio’s representatives in Turkey our goals are to increase the awareness of Sanrio brands like Hello Kitty through the development of a wide variety of products, retail concepts and the encouragement of gift giving.

"Istanbul has always been a very unique and exciting city. It has shown consistent growth over the past years in a world in which many economies are shrinking; it is rapidly changing from an emerging city to a world class fashionable economic force in the region and it represents a preferred touristic destination for many affluent people from various cultures and religions.

Beste Kaleli Tekelioğlu, partner of Peritozu and licensee of the Hello Kitty World concept, commented: “We, as Kaleli family and a 40-year-old firm in the Turkish business world, are very glad to have a partnership with Sanrio in this project."

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