Chinese retailer MINISO apologizes for mistranslating Qipao toy into ‘Japanese Geisha’ on overseas social media
Published: Aug 10, 2022 04:23 PM Updated: Aug 10, 2022 04:17 PM
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Chinese retailer and variety store chain MINISO Group apologized on Tuesday after its Spainish Instagram account mistranslated Chinese Qipao into “Japanese Geisha” in a post promoting its mystery toy boxes, sparking a widespread backlash on Chinese social media, which continued even after the apology.
The retailer said in a statement on its official Weibo account that the headquater has asked its Spanish branch to terminate cooperation with the agency operating the account and conduct internal rectification after receiving feedbacks from users.
The company said that when MINISO Spain posted the Disney Princess blind box product on Instagram on July 25, the Chinese Qipao toy was translated to Japanese Geisha incorrectly.
“We are deeply sorry for the error when we publish the product content on overseas social media, and the damage caused by the error to the majority of users,” the company said.
The company has pledged to further strengthen the management of its global agent system, especially the export of Chinese traditional culture, and strictly avoid the recurrence of such mistakes.

However, criticism directed at the company continues on social media platforms even after its apology, with some social media users revealing that the company positions itself as a Japanese brand in certain foreign market, while one widely circulated post claims that Chinese songs are not allowed in the stores.

A commentary on on Tuesday said that the company’s certain commercial and market strategy is not of consequence, but it cannot make mistakes on matters of principle.
MINISO was among the Chinese companies that has been actively expanding overseas market in recent years.
According to its website, MINISO has entered 100 countries and regions and opened more than 5,000 stores around the world.
According to a financial report of MINISO group issued on May 26, in the quarter ended March 31, 2022, the group made $369.3 million in profit, representing an increase of 5 percent from the previous year.
The number of MINISO stores in China reached 3,197 during the reporting period, increasing by 385 on year and its stores in overseas market reached 1,916, up 141 from the previous year, according to the financial results.
Global Times