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President Chain Store Corp, operator of 7-Eleven in Taiwan is testing a new concept store, which offers Domino’s Pizza. 

Domino's Pizza in 7-Eleven

The co-branded store will be launched in Taipei’s Xinyi District, offering freshly cooked pizza from Domino's. Pizzas will be cooked on-site and priced between US$2.9 and US6.8. The trial store aims to target busy workers and the retailer hopes that the initiative will increase sales of other items such as beverages.

7-Eleven continues to diversify its offer

Taiwan's convenience market is notoriously dense and competitive, and retailers across the market are introducing new initiatives and services to achieve growth. As the largest retailer in the market, 7-Eleven has been launching new concept stores, e.g. unstaffed X-Store and BEING fit gym concept. It also recently launched a new Big7 store, combining a café, confectionery zone, bookstore, bakery and K-Seren beauty store into one space.

Key competitor FamilyMart has also been diversifying its offer and services, launching a futuristic store last year and partnering with companies to offer financial, catering and laundry services in its stores.

 

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FamilyMart has launched its first laundry-convenience store in the Sanchong District of New Taipei, Taiwan.

A multipurpose convenience store

FamilyMart's new laundry convenience store, which opened last month, operates approx. 140 sq m. The store is fitted with five all-in-one washer-dryers, a service support/payment counter, an area for daily consumables, cigarettes, and more. The retailer plans to open ten more stores of this concept within the next year, with commercial districts that have a high percentage of renters an area of focus.

Smart laundrette and mobile notifications...

For greater convenience, customers can access real-time information about service availability using the FamilyMart app. They also have the option to receive a SMS notifications five minutes prior to the end of their laundry cycle. Prices range between NT$190 (US$6,2) and NT$220 (US$7.2) based on the service. Customer can also choose from 30 different methods of payment.

Competitive convenience landscape

FamilyMart continues to test new store concepts and initiatives. Its futuristic store, which we highlighted as one of The top 17 stores to visit in Asia in 2019 is an excellent example. We have seen FamilyMart in Japan move towards a similar direction, installing laundry machines to support shoppers' wider needs albeit in mainly existing convenience stores.

Taiwan's convenience landscape is highly competitive. Retailers are launching multipurpose stores to meet lifestyle needs in addition to stocking basic food and drink. This is beginning to extend further than just paying bills, buying train tickets and picking up online deliveries, and into pharmaceutical, leisure (gym) and beauty.

A.S. Watson continues to digitally transform its business around the world. Its latest initiatives are to launch a Watsons Mini Store in China and Watsons Pay in Taiwan.

Watsons Mini Store to support O2O

In China, Watsons has also launched Watsons Mini Store, a WeChat Mini Program that enables shoppers to share in-store experiences via social media and create a more seamless online and offline experience. The initiative allows customers to recommend and sell Watsons products to their social media followers. To-date, it has over 10,000 customers selling on the platform.

Watsons Pay for convenience and to strengthen loyalty

In Taiwan, Watsons continues to bring digital features in-store. Earlier in the year, Watsons launched its Tech-Fun store in Taipei, featuring large-scale live broadcast screens and virtual technology make-up service. The retailer has also recently launched Watsons Pay, allowing shoppers to easily make payment via their mobiles online and in-store. Watsons Taiwan has around 5m members on its loyalty programme and hopes to increase this to 6m within two years.

To better connect with its customers...

Group Chief Operating Officer of A.S. Watson Group, Malina Ngai, said, “Customers in today’s digital world have high expectations, and if a company can’t satisfy them, they will churn and move on to one that can. From awareness, product consideration and purchase to loyalty and advocacy, it is of strategic importance that we use technology smartly to connect with customers at micro moments to provide relevant and enriched experiences.”

We have seen several retailers across Asia launch their own e-wallets recently, including AEON in Malaysia, and FamilyMart and Carrefour in Taiwan.

AEON launches its own e-wallet

Earlier this year, AEON introduced its e-wallet app. Available to download on Google Play and Apple App store, AEON's e-wallet allows shoppers to pay and earn points at participating AEON stores (AEON Big Hypermarkets, AEON MaxValu Prime and AEON Wellness) seamlessly. Users can pay by scanning the QR code at the point of sale and earn points for credit when making purchases with the app.

Users just need to add their credit card to the e-wallet and will then be able to monitor their balance and transaction history real-time. The app has a biometric login feature and multi-factor authentication to help reassure users any concerns about security.

AEON Asia Sdn Bhd.'s Managing Director, Shinobu Washizawa, said, "We realise that there is an increase in the use of mobile payments, thus the AEON e-wallet will not only provide our customers with convenience, but also a safe and secure payment system [...]."

Last year, the retailer announced plans to invest JPY500bn (US$4.4bn) in online operations over the next three years. It posted a robust set of H1 results earlier this month.

Other epayment solutions in Asia

The introduction of mobile payment services in Taiwan has been relatively slow despite high smartphone penetration. Many shoppers still prefer to purchase online and collect and pay in cash in-store. However, retailers are beginning to invest in more digital solutions, for example, FamilyMart (My FamiPay) and Carrefour (Carrefour Pay) have recently launched their own e-wallets in Taiwan. The latter allows users to add up to five credit cards in one app. Two of the most well-known epayment solutions in Asia are Alipay and WeChat pay.

This in-depth guide to Taiwan explores the key trends in grocery retail and the growth strategies of the leading retailers in the country.

We've developed a single, universal methodology for calculating food and consumer goods retail data, supported by our programme of primary and secondary research. This makes Datacentre the most reliable and robust source available for data of this type. 

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