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Watsons Thailand to open 50 new stores

Central Watson, operator of the Watsons Thailand network, says it will open 50 more stores by the end of this year.

The expansion will take its network to 381, increasing its dominance over rival Boots which on last count had just 230 stores.

MD Rod Routley told a briefing that the expansion will cost 400 million baht, around US$12 million, which represents a 15 per cent increase in the company’s capital expenditure this calendar year.

Besides the new openings, the company plans to renovate many existing stores and expand its promotional activity to lure new customers.

“Thailand is one of the fastest growing markets in terms of store expansion in the Asean region,” Routley said.

Watsons Thailand is a joint venture between the powerful Thai Central Group and Hong Kong based AS Watson, the brand’s parent.

This week, Watsons Thailand opened an online store offering about 1000 stock units, including some available only online and not in stores.

Some of the new Watsons stores will follow a new, larger format unveiled in Siam Square in February. At 500 sqm, the store is considerably larger than the brand’s previous flagship and can display an expanded product range.

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