Ryohin Keikaku, the operator of Muji stores, has confirmed that 70 percent of new Muji stores opening next year in Japan will be supermarkets, emphasising its recently announced strategy to move heavily into food in the domestic market.
In the year to August, there were 456 Muji stores in Japan and another 546 overseas. Muji will open 36 new stores overseas this year and 45 in Japan, including around 30 new supermarkets, with no plans for closures.
This rate of expansion is probably a record for any supermarket chain, with only convenience stores and drugstores opening faster. It will also increase prices on some items and plans to also expand e-commerce, with a forecast 1 percent growth in same store sales. Total sales are forecasted at JPY 480 billion (US$4.16 billion), 5.8 percent up on 2020, with operating profits up 6 percent to JPY 45 billion (US$390 million). Net profits are expected to fall 5.6 percent to ¥32 billion partly due to changes to leases in the USA.
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