In Japan, Yodabashi Camera and Bic Camera are popular locations for those wanting to purchase electronics.
Sofmap is a subsidiary of Bic Camera and an electronic retailer that sells both new and used products. Established back in 1982 by Kei Suzuki, the origins of Sofmap was back in the software rental business. But due to copyright issues, the company withdrew from that model and pursued on a new business that would focus on selling used hardware.
In 2006, Bic Camera acquired 61.56% of the company’s shares.
With a total of 37 stores as of 2015, in Akihabara (Akiba), Sofmap has a total of four stores and each are located nearby. In fact, the first Akihabara store was created back in 1983.
While the main Sofmap store is popular because it caters to the demographic that love video games and Japanese music.
But similar to other stores, each floor is separated by the products sold. From Smart phones, to cameras, computers, accessories, medical supplies, watches and business gear, used items and video game consoles including CD and DVD’s.
No far from the main store, right next door to the Sega Building is the Sofmap Amusement store which features video games, anime and idol goods which targets a larger demographic, especially catering to the Akihabara demographic.
Unlike the main store in which floor caters to different electronics, the Sofmap Amusement Store sells Duty-free merchandise, gaming consoles, pre-owned game consoles, figurines and trading cards, new games and music, pre-owned games and music, gravure idols and adult entertainment and also an event floor.
Next door to the main building the Sofmap Reuse General Store. This building specializes in duty free merchandise, tablets, Mac hardware, cell phones and cameras band also computers. But the location is best for those looking for second-hand hardware.
If you are ever in Japan and happen to be in Akihabara, if you are looking for electronics or if you are looking for niche merchandise that related to anime, video games, figures or more, Sofmap stores are worth visiting!