SEOUL -- Chung Yong-jin, the de facto head of South Korean retail giant Shinsegae, who is well known for ingenious ideas, is making a fresh challenge with Jrilla, a character resembling himself, to launch a character business, starting with a golf fashion brand.
Shinsegae Food, the food business arm of Shinsegae Group, said it has released golf wear targeting young golfers to expand its character business using Jrilla, through cooperation with an online golf select shop. Sales will begin at a pop-up store in a Shinsegae department store in southern Seoul. More than 20 types of products including padded vests, shirts, pants and skirts are on standby, with lightning patterns, sensuous colors and cute Jrilla characters used as design elements.
Jrilla, which is a combination of "J" and gorilla, opened an Instagram account in April 2021. Shinsegae Food is nurturing Jrilla, a gorilla born and raised on Mars, as a popular character interacting with friends of the Earth in the fields of fashion, music, sports, and food. In a year, the character has grown up as an influencer with about 50,000 followers by participating in various brand events.
From now on, Shinsegae Food will buckle down to its character business by actively promoting collaboration with other brands and pursuing profits through intellectual property business. "We have introduced trendy golf wear in an effort to expand our character business while pushing for various cultural approaches with Jrilla," an unnamed Shinsegae Food official said in a statement on October 14.
Chung's innovative ideas have been translated into new business opportunities to help Shinsegae diversify its business portfolio with specialty stores that focus on a particular concept. He built a giant luxury and leisure shopping mall called Starfield, opened a French lifestyle boutique hotel in central Seoul and introduced a fleet of autonomous shopping carts.
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