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Eslite Groups forecasts at least 7.7% revenue growth in 2014

TAIPEI--The operator of Taiwan's popular Eslite Bookstore (誠品書店) chain predicts revenues will grow to over NT$14 billion (US$461.34 million) this year, a company executive said.

That represents at least 7.7-percent growth from the NT$13 billion posted in 2013, Eslite Groups Vice Chairperson Wu Min-chieh said at a press conference to celebrate the group's 25th anniversary.

Speaking on overseas expansion, she noted that since Eslite opened its first Hong Kong store in 2012, over 20,000 people have signed up for membership with the bookseller.

If membership continues to grow, she said, the company will consider turning the store into a 24-hour bookshop like its landmark store in downtown Taipei.

Wu also outlined ambitious plans to open two to three new stores in Taiwan each year, and starting in 2016 it will also aim for one new mainland China store per year.

Eslite currently has 42 stores in Taiwan and one in Hong Kong and has 980,000 shoppers in its membership program.

Expansion in China is set to begin with two new branches in the second quarter of 2015, one in Shanghai and the other in nearby Suzhou.

Wu's father, Eslite President and Chairman Robert Wu, said the two stores aim to help Taiwan's cultural and creative industry companies expand into the Chinese market and facilitate interaction between Taiwanese companies and their Chinese counterparts.

Eslite Groups also includes Eslite Shows and Performances, Eslite Gallery, Eslite Spectrum, Eslite Gourmet and Eslite On-line Bookstore.

In 2004, Eslite was chosen as “Best Bookstore” in Time Magazine's The Best of Asia survey. It also received the Top 100 Taiwan Brands Award presented by the Ministry of Economic Affairs in 2011.

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