Brookstone Expands Globally by Opening Its First Overseas Store in Nanjing, China

Jan 05, 2016, 08:50 ET from Sanpower Group

NANJING, China, Jan. 5, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Innovative product developer and specialty retailer Brookstone began the new year by opening its first overseas store in one of the largest retail shopping centers in Nanjing, China. The store opened to excited crowds of shoppers and rang in first-day sales that far exceeded expectations. Additionally, Brookstone opened three store-in-stores within Funtalk Telecommunication's locations in Beijing and Shanghai.

"We're thrilled with how enthusiastically customers are embracing their first Brookstone China store experience," said Brookstone CEO Tom Via. "They love being able to try out our massagers, wear the Cat Ear Headphones and see the drones in action."

Brookstone was acquired in 2014 by the Sanpower Group, a multi-national conglomerate based in China, and is fulfilling its corporate mission to bring premium American lifestyle products to shoppers in China while providing China-based makers access to American and international retail markets.

Fifty years ago, Pierre de Beaumont, an American mechanical engineer, distributed a 24-page black-and-white catalog of Hard-to-Find Tools to hobbyists and other innovation-minded people. Original and unique, these tools were sourced, designed and manufactured by Brookstone -- the company de Beaumont started and named after his farm in Western Massachusetts.

In China, Brookstone is filled with "Easy. Surprises."

Though known for innovation, Brookstone has always been a fairly "down-to-earth" brand, with products designed to make everyday living easier, better and more fun. Over the years it has built quite a following for its memory foam pillows, sleep sound machines, massagers and checkpoint-friendly luggage. Xin Kexia, Chairman of Brookstone China and President of HiSap, is using the slogan "Easy Surprise" to position Brookstone as a destination for people to find "surprising innovations that make life easier."

Throughout its 50 years of development as an American brand, the Brookstone mission has been to offer premium, unique and innovative products. Not only does it have in-house R&D teams that develop Brookstone-branded products, it also explores innovative products from makers all over the world. This comprehensive approach to developing and sourcing products has been key to establishing Brookstone as a leading retailer for launching innovative products in the U.S. The Sanpower Group values Brookstone's advanced product development business model.

"For offline commerce to have any real meaning in the future Internet-based society, it must meet the spiritual needs of consumers," said Xin Kexia, "and offer customers a richer experience. Our mission is to consistently offer fresh and exciting product that customers have never seen before."

To achieve this goal, the Sanpower Group has made active strategic adjustments, and joined hands with Brookstone to sign an important cooperation agreement with the MIT Media Lab, the world's renowned research and innovation institution. The agreement grants the Sanpower Group and Brookstone unlimited access to the MIT Media Lab, which offers advanced, innovative product resources for the R&D of Brookstone's new products.

Upon its entry into China, Brookstone will adopt a sales model that features a hands-on interactive shopping experience. Its stores will transition from being simply sales channels to platforms for hands-on and interactive experiences. Store associates will be not so much salespersons as friendly guides that let customers experience products on their own. Associates will show the customers how to operate the wildly successful Brookstone Cat Ear Headphones, massagers, and sleep machines.

Piau Phang Foo, Global Vice President of the Sanpower Group and Chairman of Brookstone, said that after its initial entry into China, Brookstone will pursue a strategy to open up independent shops in airports and high-speed railway stations. In addition, Brookstone will continue to launch store-in-stores in Sanpower's offline retail brands, including Hisap and Smart Funtalk Telecommunications, so as to synergize with the business resources of the Group. 

About Brookstone, Inc.

Brookstone, founded in 1965, is a specialized U.S.-based retailer of innovative and lifestyle products designed for smart living. Brookstone offers a diverse collection of exclusive, uniquely designed, high-quality products through a multi-channel strategy including over 300 shopping mall and airport stores across the US and Puerto Rico, online at Brookstone.com and a B2B/wholesale business.

Brookstone is a member of Sanpower Group company. Sanpower Group owns a diverse portfolio of listed companies including Hiteker (600122.SH), Nanjing Xinjiekou Department Store Co.,Ltd (600682.SH), IDT International (00167.HK), Mecox Lane, and Jinpeng Yuankang, as well as key privately held global enterprises such as Hisap, Funtalk Telecommunications, Hirealty, Jinpeng, China Newsweek, Lashou.com, House of Fraser (UK), Hamleys (UK), AN Kang Tong, Natali (Israel) and A.S. Nursing Company (Israel). Sanpower now has total assets and annual gross sales in excess of of RMB 100 billion.

For more information, visit Brookstone.com and follow them at Twitter.com/Brookstone and Facebook.com/Brookstone. 

Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160105/319244

SOURCE Sanpower Group