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Don Don Donki opens second outlet in Thailand despite Covid-19

Amidst the Covid-19 outbreak, Japanese discount-variety store Don Don Donki has continued ahead with the opening of its latest branch in Bangkok, Thailand as part of its international expansion. 

The Japanese retailer, known at home as Don Quixote, entered Thailand in February last year, opening a Donki Mall in the expatriate haven of Thonglor.

The new store, located at The Market mall, will retail more than 130,000 items including fresh groceries and daily necessities. 

The new branch also features its private label Jonetsu Kakaku with an in-store dining space. However, in the short term, the branch will provide only take-away services for cooked food due to the coronavirus pandemic and government limits on cafe operations. To further adjust to the current situation, the retailer will limit the number of store entrances and exits and will control the flow of customers into the store. The temperatures of staff and customers will be checked at numerous touchpoints around the store and baskets and cashier counters will be sterilised frequently. 

Chairman Shimanuki Yosuke says the company had imported large stocks of products in advance of the opening, and before the coronavirus pandemic broke out. 

Hong Kong plans

Meanwhile in Hong Kong, the daily customer count of the company’s stores there tripled during recent weeks as locals stocked up on imported goods, unable to travel abroad. 

There are widespread rumours that Don Don Donki is about to open its fifth outlet in the territory, at Central. The news leaked out during rental leasing negotiations for nearby properties. 

Local media is reporting that the retailer has its eye on a two-storey premises at 100 Queen’s Road Central, spanning 17,800sqft. Earlier reports had the company opening more stores at Tseung Kwan O and Causeway Bay, to complement its flagships in Tsim Tsa Tsui and Tsuen Wan.

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