Big in Japan
We have invested lots of passion and attention to detail into the making of our TASSEN and TALENT products. So much so, that we thought they were ready to make a big move into the whole wide world this year. After taking the leap across the pond for our first tradeshow in the U.S. in July in Atlanta (read the story Tassen go USA), we felt ready to follow our long-time dream of taking a shot at being “Big in Japan”.
So from June 14-16, 2017, we exhibited our
latest goods at the Interior Lifestyle Tokyo tradeshow in the Land of the Rising Sun. Organized by Messe Frankfurt, the show provided us with a unique opportunity to
display our “Made in Germany” products as one of 787 exhibitors. And out of all these brands,
we were surely among the highest in
“kawaii” responses (“cute” in Japanese)
from visitors that echoed through the halls of the tradeshow center.
If you know FIFTYEIGHT, you also know that the connection to Japanese culture runs deep in our company DNA. Two of our founders, Max and Marc, have felt a deep connection to Japan for some time now: The cuisine, sense of aesthetics, politeness and respect – all that only exists in Japan. It was a serious setback when Marc was unable to visit the show, but just as the entire mission looked like a failure, another opportunity opened up. Marc’s brother-in-law, Jun, is actually half Japanese and spent years working and living in Tokyo. So when the FIFTYEIGHT PRODUCTS family needed his help, he never hesitated to come to the rescue by offering his interpreting and networking expertise, plus cultural insights.
Everyone familiar with Japanese culture will attest that exclusive gifts play an important role here. Enter the TASSEN and TALENT line of products. These emotional porcelain companions prove the perfect choice when a love-struck Japanese man is looking for the perfect gift for the woman of his dreams, something “kawaii” with a great story and premium quality.
Overall, our products turned out to be a perfect match for Japanese audiences. They really “got” our style and design aesthetic. Okay, perhaps there were some exceptions, for instance we had to reposition our Egg Cups as Sake Cups, because nobody in Japan really serves boiled eggs in little cups. But hey, sake totally works for us as well and the size of the cups is also pretty much perfect. Kampai! So here’s cheers to our very first tradeshow appearance in Japan, because it was a big one. Let’s see if the Japanese consumers will fall in love with our products as much as we fell in love with their culture. Domo Arigato Tokyo!