Thailand’s ubiquitous 7-Elevens finally are coming to Laos after franchiser CP All secured a license to the convenience stores aimed at a retail market across the border.
The listed retail arm of Thailand’s largest conglomerate Charoen Pokphand Group, formed CP All Laos on Friday with registered capital of US$2.2 billion after entering into 30-year master-franchise agreement with U.S.-based 7-Eleven, which is itself a unit of Seven-Eleven Japan. The pact can be extended for a further 20 years upon mutual agreement.
The first Laotian 7-Eleven is expected to open in Vientiane in 2022, Seven-Eleven Japan said in a statement on Monday.
CP All earlier this year first expanded its 7-Empire to Cambodia with the first store there expected to open next year. CP All already has 12,000 7-Eleven franchises in Thailand.
CP has a vested interest in opening 7-Elevens in Laos, as they will serve as a distribution network for its existing feedstuff, poultry and food businesses there.
Asia Plus Securities said Monday that CP All wants to sell what it makes and 7-Eleven stores on every corner are the best way to do that.
Laos’s retail market has grown about 8.7 percent annually and was worth about $1.4 billion in 2019, according to Kasikorn Research Center.
Laos already has about 65,000 retail shops, but all but 53 are mom-and-pop businesses easy for 7-Elevens to demolish, analysts noted.