FamilyMart and Don Quijote enter talks on business partnership

Major retailer FamilyMart Uny Holdings Co. and discount store operator Don Quijote Holdings Co. have announced the launch of talks on forging a business alliance.

Specifically, the two companies are studying joint product development and procurement, and steps to streamline distribution, in order to reduce costs. They will also run stores jointly on a trial basis amid a serious labor shortage.

“We’ll be able to complement each other because our business fields and areas of operations do not overlap substantially,” Mitsuo Takahashi, a senior official of Don Quijote, said in a teleconference on Tuesday.

FamilyMart Uny, which mainly operates supermarkets and convenience stores, and Don Quijote are also considering collaborating in developing new businesses using know-how they have accumulated.

The two companies are hoping to reach a definite agreement after fleshing out the tie-up plan in about six months.

Takahashi said that a future capital tie-up between the two firms could be one of the topics in their talks. But he added, “At the moment, it remains to be seen if the matter will be up for discussion.”

On the possibility of Don Quijote supporting the turnaround of FamilyMart Uny’s slumping Uny brand supermarket operations, Takahashi said, “We’ll study what we can while we collaborate with the FamilyMart Uny side.”

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