Central Retail has taken full control of the FamilyMart Thailand business, a precursor to expanding the network in the country.
Currently FamilyMart has just 1000 convenience stores, largely centred in the capital city of Bangkok. That’s a fraction of the 14,000-odd stores under CP All-owned rival 7-Eleven.
“The acquisition of all the shares of FamilyMart is in line with Central Retail’s strategy to strengthen our Central Retail & Service Platform, reaffirming our leading position in retail business, as well as to increase our potential in offering full-scale services through customer-centric omnichannels,” said Central Retail CEO Yol Phokasub.
He said the company plans to continue expanding the FamilyMart Thailand store network but did not provide any further details.
Central Retail has run the FamilyMart Thailand business in partnership with Japan FamilyMart Co since 2012, through a company called SFM Holdings. Central held 50.65 per cent of the shares in SFM and its Robinsons department store division 0.35 per cent. Yesterday, Central bought the remaining 49 per cent from the Japanese company.
Phokasub says the deal strengthens the power of Central’s food and convenience-store businesses at a time when Thailand’s food market is thriving.
“Over the past eight years of operating FamilyMart convenience stores, CRC has always been committed to improving the business model and expanding stores to offer convenience to consumers through products and services, with unique selling points to meet the needs of consumers in all areas. It has become a lifestyle & food destination with ready-to-eat meals, beverages, Arigato fresh coffee and open spaces for everyone to come mix and mingle 24 hours a day,” he said.
Under Central Retail’s leadership, the FamilyMart Thailand concept has expanded into other areas of convenience, including installing 24/7 coin-operated washing machines in some stores.
During the Covid-19 crisis the chain launched vending machines both inside and outside stores, serving ready-to-eat meals, beverages and snacks.
The company also recently partnered with delivery-service Grab to allow customers to purchase products from FamilyMart remotely.