Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 11/28/2012 -- Private consumption growth in Japan is expected to continue to wane, as the employment outlook remains sombre and government subsidies for fuel-efficient cars come to an end. Given that private consumption accounts for around 60% of Japan's GDP, weak domestic demand can be expected to weigh on the country's growth for the rest of 2012 and into 2013. Longer term, the contracting growth opportunities in Japan's food, drink and retail sectors mean that overseas expansion will continue to be a strategic priority for local players such as Lawson and Asahi.
Headline Industry Data (local currency)
- 2012 per capita food consumption = +0.9%; five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) to 2016 = +0.5%
- 2012 alcoholic drinks value sales = +2.8%; CAGR growth forecast to 2016 = +1.2%
- 2012 soft drinks value sales = +4.7%; CAGR growth forecast to 2016 = +3.8%
- 2012 mass grocery retail sales = +1.5%; CAGR growth forecast to 2016 = +0.6%
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Key Industry Trends
Itochu Acquires Dole's Asian Assets: US produce group Dole has recently announced a deal to sell its global packaged food and Asian fresh businesses to Japan-based trading conglomerate Itochu in a transaction worth US$1.7bn. Itochu aims to almost double profit from its food businesses to JPY40bn in three years, according to the company's annual report. The company expects to benefit from Dole's brand image and gain stability by establishing a new revenue stream other than natural resources, which can be vulnerable to price fluctuations.
Tesco Exits Japan: In summer 2012, UK mass grocery retail (MGR) player Tesco ended its nine-year struggle in Japan by offloading its loss-making business to Japanese MGR operator Aeon. Tesco's decision to leave Japan can be attributed to the retailer's expansionary ambitions in other higher-growth Asian MGR markets, and its proposed divestment of its Japan business is likely to leave it better positioned to pursue growth across the region. For Aeon, an acquisition of Tesco Japan will help facilitate its ambitions of consolidating a stronger foothold in its domestic market.
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