Vietnam-A strategic market of AEON Vietnam

June 19, 2023 | 08:00
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Identifying Vietnam as the second key investment market behind Japan, AEON has continuously expanded its investment in this country.

Earlier in 2023, shopping mall AEON Thua Thien-Hue officially saw construction start. After opening its first shopping mall in Vietnam in 2014, in Celadon Tan Phu (Ho Chi Minh City), AEON has continuously built shopping malls in Binh Duong (2014); Long Bien (Hanoi, 2015); Binh Tan (Ho Chi Minh City, 2016); Ha Dong (Hanoi, 2019) and Haiphong (2020). Each location boasts a plethora of general merchandise stores and supermarkets.

Vietnam-A strategic market of AEON Vietnam

With a total investment of nearly $170 million, AEON Thua Thien-Hue is expected to come into operation by the end of fiscal year 2024.

In addition to large shopping malls, AEON in Vietnam owns and operates one medium-sized supermarket; 21 supermarkets including AEON Citimart and AEON MaxValu brands; 24 specialised stores; nearly 140 convenience stores; two distribution centres; and an e-commerce site.

Through eight subsidiaries in Vietnam, AEON invests and operates in many fields, such as general retail, shopping mall development, services, finance, import and export, and private brand product development.

Vietnam-A strategic market of AEON Vietnam

The ecosystem is enough for AEON to become more familiar and receive the trust of Vietnamese consumers. The diversity in products and services, along with interesting shopping experiences and thoughtful utilities, demonstrates sophistication and customer understanding with Japanese-style dedicated service.

“We want our business to be welcomed naturally and become a familiar brand for Vietnamese people. This is really our biggest goal and also what we are working hard to achieve,” said Furusawa Yasuyuki, general director of AEON Vietnam.

Present in Vietnam since 2009 in the form of a representative office, it was until the end of 2011 that AEON officially established its first company in Vietnam. While the total capital has not been disclosed, with each AEON shopping mall boasting investment of about $200 million, more than $1 billion has been pumped in by the Japanese retailer in Vietnam over the past decade.

But the figures will not stop there because according to Yasuyuki, AEON will continue to expand investment in Vietnam. Currently, AEON is still aiming to develop 16 medium and large shopping malls by 2025.

“Although it is still a priority to focus on developing large shopping malls to meet the changing shopping needs of customers, AEON will follow a flexible strategy in order to diversify the retail formats,” explained Yasuyuki.

In addition to those large shopping malls, AEON will also choose formats to suit the needs of customers in each locality. That is why, since 2020, AEON has deployed the MaxValu supermarket (with an area of 300-500sq.m) in urban residential areas, bringing the AEON standard closer to home and aligning with the daily routines of customers. And in 2022, the company also opened its first so-called super supermarket in Hanoi – AEON The Nine.

“In 2023, we will deploy 2-3 additional medium-sized supermarkets, with the first in Binh Duong city. If effective, we will continue to deploy projects like this in the future,” said Yasuyuki.

Along with that, with the desire to bring quality Vietnamese-made products according to AEON standards at reasonable prices, the company will promote the introduction of private brand products produced in Vietnam. This also aims to contribute to stabilising the supply chain and supporting the capacity building of domestic suppliers.

Currently, products under AEON’s own private brands such as TOPVALU, HÓME COORDY, and GIORNO MIMOSA are still being developed. However, these products account for a very modest proportion of only about 1-2 per cent of total sales. In the near future, AEON aims to increase the revenue share of these products to at least 10 per cent.

In addition, AEON looks to promote digital transformation, develop an omnichannel sales system, promote e-commerce and non-cash payments, and build an integrated point accumulation system in the ecosystem of its eight member companies in Vietnam to increase convenience for customers.

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Japanese retail giant AEON is excited to promote further investment in this country. Furusawa Yasuyuki, executive officer board member of AEON Co., Ltd. in charge of Vietnam Business, as well as general director of AEON Vietnam, explained to VIR’s Hoang Oanh why Vietnam is the most important foreign market for the group.

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