After the landfall of AEON, Takashimaya, 7-Eleven, and FujiMart, Vietnam’s retail market will welcome a new Japanese player called MUJI from Japan, which promises to heat up the race in this high-potential sector.
Ryohin Keikaku Co., Ltd. (the parent company of MUJI) announced that the board of directors has resolved the establishment of a subsidiary, MUJI Vietnam LLC, in Vietnam for further business development.
Among all the fast-developing ASEAN countries, Vietnam has the third-largest population and is undergoing rapid economic development. MUJI sees Vietnam as one of the major markets in the ASEAN, with an estimated real GDP growth of 7.1 per cent in 2018. RKJ has therefore decided to establish a new company in Vietnam.
Many Japanese brands are present in the Vietnamese retail market, such as AEON, Takashimaya, 7-Eleven, and now Sumitomo with FujiMart.
AEON was the first to enter the country. Recently, this retailer had to abandon the Fivimart supermarket chain to Vietnamese retailer Vingroup and also broke up with Trung Nguyen with whom they jointly bought the franchising rights to Ministop. However, in the commercial centre segment, AEON Mall has turned a profit only after three years of operation, while many competitors are still suffering heavy losses.
AEON Group has four shopping malls in Hanoi, Binh Duong, and Ho Chi Minh City and it is regarded as a major competitor on the Vietnamese retail scene. It plans to build a new mall in Hanoi and another in Haiphong in the short run, and to have 20 malls across the country by 2020.
Meanwhile, AEON Group has been in partnership with Japan’s Sojitz Corporation to develop Ministop convenience stores. The two firms aim to raise the number of their joint outlets to 800 in the next eight years.
Japanese retailer Takashimaya decided to conquer the Vietnamese market by setting up its first shopping mall in Ho Chi Minh City with the capital of over $25 million. The firm is planning to increase sales by expanding daily family services and expects to turn a profit by 2022.
In July 2017, the first 7-Eleven store was launched in Ho Chi Minh City via Seven System Vietnam (SSV) as the Master Franchisee of the 7-Eleven convenience store system in Vietnam, making Vietnam the 19th country to host the world’s largest convenience store chain.
7-Eleven does not expand through the franchise form, but will open and operate stores by itself. It aims to open 100 stores within three years and 1,000 stores in the next 10 years.