President Chain Store Corp (統一超商) yesterday opened its 5,000th 7-Eleven convenience store, in Greater Kaohsiung, a year ahead of plans, as convenience stores have increasingly become an integral part of life for Taiwanese.
Since it opened the first 7-Eleven store in Taiwan in 1980, President Chain has cornered a competitive market with a diversified operating model and a nearly 50 percent market share.
With more than 10,000 convenience stores in operation in a nation of 23 million people, sustaining profitability has become a major challenge for operators. However, the market leader yesterday said the market is not yet saturated.
Photo: Chen Yu-cheng, Taipei Times
“Lifestyles in Taiwan are in transition, and customer spending habits and preferences are changing, which means the retail sector is entering a new era of development,” the Chinese-language Apple Daily’s online news site yesterday quoted President Chain chairman Alex Lo (羅智先) as saying.
With this change in mind, Lo said the number of stores was not important, but the products and services President Chain could offer its customers are.
Lo was interviewed as the company launched its newest store in Greater Kaohsiung’s Neimen District (內門) yesterday, a day after the company reported its cumulative sales for the first half of the year had hit a record level.
Sales in the first six months totaled NT$101.44 billion (US$3.38 billion), an increase of 3.59 percent from the same period last year, the company said in an e-mailed statement.
The company, which reported NT$2.97 billion in net profit in the first quarter with earnings per share of NT$2.86, has not yet released its second-quarter profit report.
On Wednesday, domestic rival Taiwan FamilyMart Co (全家便利商店) reported sales of NT$4.91 billion last month, the highest figures for June in the company’s history, with accumulated sales in the first half rising 5 percent year-on-year to NT$27.31 billion.
President Chain attributed the strong earnings to rising sales of beverages, as well as increasing e-commerce and online shopping revenues, according to the statement.
Domestic subsidiaries such as cosmetics retailer Cosmed (康是美) and parcel delivery unit President Transnet Corp (統一速達), and overseas units including Philippine 7-Eleven and Shanghai Starbucks also reported higher sales, President Chain said.
The company said sales growth momentum should continue this month, driven by various marketing activities designed to take advantage of purchases made during the summer vacation and the FIFA World Cup.
Lo said that the company has opened stores in all the major cities and townships of the nation and would continue to open more stores.
“Sometimes, I can’t help wondering how many convenience stores Taiwan can accommodate,” Lo was quoted as saying. “Basically, the convenience store business in Taiwan is unique in the world. It is just so convenient.”
By adopting larger stores and offering more value-added services, such as online shopping and offering tickets for public transportation, the nation’s major convenience store chains have developed into the model of a one-stop shop.
In the first five months of the year, they posted total sales of NT$117.8 billion, up 5.4 percent year-on-year and accounting for 26.71 percent of the nation’s total retail sales, data from the Ministry of Economic Affairs showed last month.
‘BULLISH YEAR AHEAD’: The contract chipmaker set a growth target of up to 29 percent, as it expects to outperform its peers in the semiconductor industry Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) is planning to boost this year’s capital expenditure budget by about 46 percent to exceed US$44 billion, citing strong customer demand for advanced technologies used in high-performance computing (HPC) and 5G-related applications, the world’s largest contract chipmaker said yesterday. The plan marks a record spending for TSMC after the chipmaker budgeted US$30 billion for capacity expansions at home and overseas fabs last year. TSMC is planning to allocate about 80 percent of this year’s capital spending for advanced chip capacity expansion including 2-nanometer, 3-nanometer, 5-nanometer and 7-nanometer technologies. The chipmaker reiterated that it is on
EMERGING TECH: The semiconductor equipment industry has had unprecedented growth, with increased spending in six of the past seven years, the CEO of SEMI said Global fab equipment spending at front-end facilities is expected to grow at an annual pace of 10 percent this year to a record of more than US$98 billion, with South Korea taking the lead, followed by Taiwan, SEMI said in a quarterly report yesterday. That means that world fab equipment spending is to grow for a third straight year, following a 39 percent jump last year and 17 percent growth in 2020, the global semiconductor trade association said in a statement. The industry previously had three consecutive years of growth from 2016 to 2018, more than 20 years after logging a three-year
Electric scooter maker Gogoro Inc (睿能創意) this year expects its number of electric battery swapping stations to outstrip the number of gas stations in the nation following seven years of deployment, a sign that electric two-wheelers are gaining traction. As of the end of last year, Gogoro had built 2,215 GoStations nationwide, mostly in urban areas, up from 1,937 in 2020. The number of gas stations operated by CPC Corp, Taiwan (台灣中油) and Formosa Petrochemical Corp (台塑石化) was 2,487. “By the end of this year, we are very confident that the number of battery swapping stations will surpass the number of gas stations
TENSE WAIT: While China is close to approving the deal, Germany might be worried that GlobalWafers is headquartered in Taiwan, the firm’s chairwoman said GlobalWafers Co (環球晶圓) is close to clearing an important regulatory hurdle in its US$5.3 billion acquisition of German silicon wafer manufacturer Siltronic AG, people familiar with the matter said. The Chinese State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) has said that it is largely comfortable with the antitrust remedies proposed by the companies and could make a formal decision shortly, the people said, asking not to be identified as they were discussing confidential information. The deal still requires approval from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action, and those discussions are ongoing, the people said. GlobalWafers shares were up as