For someone whose stated aim is to dominate the global market for his product, Tadashi Yanai cuts an unassuming figure. He speaks softly about his passion for business but also about his firm belief that successful people will inevitably make mistakes, and then learn from them. His autobiography, published in 2003, is titled “One Win and Nine Losses.”
Mr. Yanai, 60, the founder and chief executive of the Japanese company Fast Retailing, has big ambitions: to be the world’s largest purveyor of cheap yet chic clothing in the next 10 years.
Fast Retailing owns Uniqlo, the so-called fast fashion chain whose square red logo with white characters now flies above 777 stores in Japan and 90 stores in China, Hong Kong, South Korea, Singapore, Britain, France and the United States.
It also owns the Theory clothing brand in the United States and two French brands, Comptoir des Cotonniers and Princesse Tam-Tam.