In 1983, the first Tsutaya opened its doors in Osaka. Conceived as a lifestyle store by Muneaki Masuda, Tsutaya began as a shop renting and selling books, videos, and music. Since then, it has become an all-encompassing Japanese pop culture platform. In 2011, the company introduced an evolved form of the Tsutaya bookstore in Daikanyama. Based on information from the brand’s “T Point” membership program, the brand continues to suggest a new lifestyle concept, spanning from appliances to smartphones.
Magazine B publisher Suyong Joh’s introduction to this issue includes the following, which nicely communicates the ethos of all of the brands profiled by Magazine B:
“The brand we are introducing in this issue is Tsutaya, a renowned Japanese bookstore chain. Tsutaya offers a chance to reenvision what an offline bookstore should be in an era of online shopping and free, same-day delivery. Tsutaya does not think of itself as just a bookstore. It is a future-oriented enterprise producing profits by planning and presenting lifestyles in all areas of the cultural space and actively using a customer database. Tsutaya insists that its lifestyle suggestions preserve the cultural industry of Japan. This mission is similar to something a governmental organization might do using taxes or something a large corporation might do as part of a social responsibility project, but Tsutaya carries it out while still making a profit.”