Retail in Asia

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Drought holding back retail store expansion in Thailand

Sales have fallen at all but one of Thailand’s major supermarket retailers as the worst drought in a decade strikes at the heart of the farming sector – the backbone of the rural economy – and frustrates plans to open more stores in the provinces.

Big C Supercenter, the second-biggest hypermart chain after Tesco Plc, suffered a 5.2 percent slide in third-quarter same-store sales growth (SSSG) from a year earlier, the most among its peers.

About half of Big C’s sales come from the country’s interior where consumers are concerned about drought, low crop prices and a weak economic outlook, analysts say. Tesco’s Thai unit does not report quarterly SSSG numbers.

(Source: Bangkok Post)