Fast Retailing, parent company of clothing retailer Uniqlo, is still targeting an acquisition in the US to build a platform for the company's international business.

However, chairman and chief executive Tadashi Yanai denied that the company was interested in acquiring Saks, following its withdrawal from the race to acquire New York department store Barneys.

"It is very difficult for us to go to the US and be successful," Yanai told The Financial Times in an interview. "We are looking to buy a US company and they would help us build a platform."

He added that he was encouraged by the strong performance of Uniqlo's New York store, and still believed there was "enormous potential" in the US.

Meanwhile, Uniqlo's international expansion continues with the opening of a flagship store in London's Oxford Street tomorrow (7 November) and another outlet next month in Paris' La Défense business district.

Fast Retailing wants to double global sales in the next three years in a programme of international expansion both in Western markets and in China and India. It also wants to overtake retail rivals such as Spain's Zara and Sweden's Hennes & Mauritz in the process.

However, last month Fast Retailing posted a 21.4% decline in full-year net profit to JPY31.7bn (US$276m), although net sales for the 12 months ended 31 August were up 17% to JPY525.2bn.