HONG KONG — Sogo operator Lifestyle International said it is planning to install in front of one of its stores a large LED screen equivalent to the size of seven tennis courts.
Made by Mitsubishi, the screen’s proportions measure 70 meters by 20 meters (229 feet by 66 feet) and will be put on the facade of its department store in Causeway Bay.
“It will be the biggest in Hong Kong,” said Lifestyle International executive director Kamshim Lau, daughter of billionaire chairman Thomas Lau. “Whether it will be the biggest in Asia, our team is still looking around to see how it compares to other outside billboards in Asia.”
Currently, the space is used for banner advertising exclusive to the brands inside Sogo but after the screen goes up later this year, it will be open to all kinds of advertisers.
“Hotels, airplanes, banks, technology firms as well. We have already hired a couple of outdoor advertising agencies to reach out to different global brands and so far we have received…interest so we are quite confident [in] the screen,” Kamshim Lau said.
“It will bring a lot more excitement to the Causeway Bay destination. It will allow us to be more flexible in terms of advertising. As you know with technology these days, sometimes we can do real-time advertising, live feeds and be more creative with the whole billboard,” she said.
The company did not specify how much the screen would cost. The Causeway Bay store also had some renovations carried out this year to its interior. It is located at an intersection which is one of the busiest in the city, akin to a Hong Kong version of the Shibuya crossing.
While the soon-to-be installed Sogo screen is huge, it still pales in comparison to some displays other retailers have. The screen at The Place in Beijing measures 250 meters by 30 meters (1,148 feet by 98 feet) while the one at Harmony Times Square mall in Suzhou is 250 meters by 16 meters (820 feet by 52 feet). The Fremont Street Experience in Las Vegas is said to be the world’s biggest LED screen at 1,400 feet by 125 feet.
Lifestyle International is also planning to open a third Hong Kong store and an adjacent shopping mall in east Kowloon by 2022. It said it had purchased a plot of land for $7.39 billion Hong Kong dollars or $951 million in Kai Tak, close to the city’s cruise terminal, which it planned to turn into twin towers. One tower will house a department store and the company’s new office headquarters, while the other will be turned into a shopping mall.
The company spun off its mainland Chinese business of Jiuguang department stores and supermarkets in July, listing it on the Hong Kong stock exchange as Lifestyle China.
Profit for the year ended Dec. 31 was 1.59 million Hong Kong dollars ($205,000) down 16. 9 percent from the year before including both Hong Kong and mainland China business. Excluding the mainland China business, it took in a yearly profit of 1.57 million Hong Kong dollars ($202,000), representing a year-over-year drop of 0.4 percent.