FamilyMart Japan: 24-hour gyms and launderette services

Date : 04 December 2017

FamilyMart in Japan is set to diversify their services, with plans to enter the fitness industry by launching a 24-hour fitness club chain, Fit & GO, and offer launderette services at selected convenience stores. 

Gyms near FamilyMart stores

Linked to a FamilyMart store, the company plans to open the first Fit & GO gym in Tokyo’s Ota Ward from February 2018. 24-hour gyms are gaining popularity in Japan and FamilyMart will look to use Fit & GO to promote health and wellbeing, providing a convenient space for people to get a quick workout before or after work.

Showers and standard fitness equipment such as treadmills and weight machines will be available at Fit & GO gyms, but there will also be some customisation between locations. There will also be dedicated Fit & GO staff such as personal trainers to support customers achieve fitness goals. Furthermore, the fitness chain will offer a smartphone app to drive engagement and provide training guidance to customers. FamilyMart company targets 300 gyms on the second floor of their stores and in other locations over the next five years. Stores will benefit from increased customer traffic and will have the opportunity to tailor their offerings to include workout-related products such as energy drinks, towels and soap.

Laundry machines at 500 stores by 2020

FamilyMart Japan also announced plans to install coin-operated laundry machines at selected stores. The equipment will be procured by Aqua Co. and the service aims to meet the needs and demands of single and two-person households. The company plans to install machines at 500 stores nationwide by the end of February 2020, with the first expected in the Kanto region by spring 2018. FamilyMart will look to renovate existing stores to open up space for laundry services, while installations will also be considered for future new store openings.

Our view

Japanese convenience stores are well-known for their convenient in-store services and vast range of affordable meal options, from bento boxes to pasta dishes, savoury snacks to sweet pastries. FamilyMart Japan is moving one step further in diversifying its services to drive future growth. At the end of October 2017, FamilyMart UNY had 17,768 stores nationwide. Ensuring that convenient and accessible locations are selected will determine the success of these new services and vital to attracting more customers. The retailer is on track to complete the full conversion and integration of UNY convenience stores by August 31 2018. FamilyMart's latest announcements should help consolidate its position as Japan's second largest convenience chain, as it presses ahead with exciting new solutions.

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