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Japan’s Bag Boom

The men’s handbag market is becoming increasingly important in Japan.

TOKYO — The men’s handbag market is becoming increasingly important in Japan — so much so that Coach recently remodeled its store in Tokyo’s Marunouchi district to focus on the category.

One of Coach’s most popular items is the Thompson messenger bag, a classic style often seen on Tokyo’s well-dressed businessmen. It is priced at 59,850 yen, or about $689 at current exchange. Japanese brands such as Aniary and Porter are also cashing in on the trend.

 

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“The market itself is getting bigger,” said a spokesman for Aniary. “We think it’s because of the increased demand on people to travel, but recently…it seems like casual bags for going out are quite popular.”

Aniary’s top-selling bags include a soft leather tote available in a variety of colors for 50,400 yen, or $580.30. Another popular item is a small shoulder pouch that retails for 31,500, or $362.68.

Porter’s Harajuku store is often teaming with young fashionable guys eager to snap up its signature nylon satchels. One of Porter’s top sellers is a backpack style from its Tanker line, priced at 18,900 yen, or $217.06. Yoshida & Co., the company behind the brand, is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year and will be releasing a collaboration bag designed in conjunction with French brand Kitsune at the end of September. Only 750 of the bags, each with its own serial number, will be available in Japan and Europe, and they will be priced at 45,150 yen, or $519.85. Made of natural-colored cotton canvas with navy trim, the bowling-style bags are designed with men and women in mind.