Hong Kong cosmetics retailer Sa Sa International Holdings will close all its stores in Taiwan by the end of March after six straight years of losses, and will concentrate on other markets including mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Malaysia and Singapore, it said on Wednesday.
In a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange, it said 260 employees would be affected, and they would be compensated according to local labour regulations.
Sa Sa had 21 shops in Taiwan as of December 2017, according to its filing. It has 119 stores in Hong Kong, 56 in mainland China, 19 in Singapore and 75 in Malaysia, selling over 700 brands ranging from skincare to beauty supplements.
“The group’s performance in Taiwan has been persistently weak, and the possibility of improvement is low into the foreseeable future. Having considered the interests of the group and the shareholders, we decide to close our business in Taiwan so that we can concentrate our resources on other markets and businesses,” said Simon Kwok Siu-ming, company chairman, in the statement.
Three employees at two of the company’s Taipei branches told the South China Morning Post when contacted by telephone that they had no idea of the closures, and had not been briefed about severance arrangements. They declined to give their names.
For the 10 months ended January 2018, turnover at Sa Sa’s Taiwan business decreased by 11.5 per cent in local currency terms year on year to HK$154.3 million (US$19.7 million), according to the company.
For the three months ended December 2017 alone, its turnover in Taiwan dropped by 5.5 per cent. compared with an 8.1 per cent rise in Hong Kong and Macau and a 13 per cent gain in mainland China in the same period.