SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) — San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee welcomed on Friday a Japanese clothing retailer that will open a store in Union Square, providing the city with 500 jobs.

Uniqlo will open a 29,000 square foot store at 111 Powell Street and will hire hundreds of full and part-time jobs.

“[I’m] very pleased to be here because this represents the first west coast flagship for Uniqlo,” said Yasunobu Kyogoku, chief operating officer for Uniqlo USA.

KCBS’ Margie Shafer Reports:

Kyogoku added that there are a number of stores in New York City, but that this is their first foray into the region.

He said his company makes high-quality clothing including cashmere sweaters and down jackets at what he describes as reasonable prices.

As a token of his appreciation, the company presented a $25,000 check as a gift to the American Red Cross, to which those in attendance began to applaud. Kyogoku said the money was for preparedness and response efforts in San Francisco neighborhoods.

“I kind of marvel at how our economy is recovering so quickly. We’re not building new buildings so much as actually filling out vacancies,” Lee said.

Uniqlo plans to open their store this fall, ahead of the holiday shopping season.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services may have contributed to this report.)


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