As China's young middle-class grows and prospers, an increasing number of Japanese firms are following the likes of Uniqlo into the fast fashion market there.

Tokyo-based apparel maker Point Inc announced recently that it plans to open the first Chinese store of its main brand, Lowrys Farm, in Shanghai this October through a local unit.

Meanwhile, Honeys Co, which already operates more than 100 stores in China, is accelerating the expansion of its store network.

Point said its sights are set on increasing its number of China stores to around 60 with annual sales of JPY5bn (US$52.3m) in three years' time.

By Michael Fitzpatrick.