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FamilyMart Japan subject of US$5 billion takeover bid

Japanese convenience-store chain FamilyMart will be sold outright to local trading company Itochu, according to reports by Nikkei and Bloomberg.

The buyer, which currently holds 50 per cent of FamilyMart business, made the decision to fully purchase the chain last Wednesday in a transaction that is expected to cost between US$4.6 billion and $5.5 billion.

The business media say the joining of the two businesses will result in a deeper level of cooperation in food procurement, consumer-goods retailing, customer-data analysis and digital payments, among other areas.

In Thailand, the FamilyMart business was completely bought out last May by local operator Central Retail as a precursor to expanding the network in the territory.

The brand has shown signs of instability that date back before the advent of the coronavirus pandemic. Last November, FamilyMart Japan reduced its operational costs by letting go 800 employees, about one in 10 of its total staff count, and made moves to allow franchisees to operate shorter opening hours.

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