South Korean convenience store chain launches franchise in Vietnam

By Bui Kim   November 1, 2019 | 02:33 am PT
South Korean convenience store chain launches franchise in Vietnam
A GS25 Vietnam store in District 3, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo courtesy of GS25 Vietnam.
GS25 Vietnam, a joint venture between South Korea's GS25 and local retailer Son Kim Group, opened up its brand to franchisees beginning Friday.

Interested franchisees can choose from one of three models offered by GS25 Vietnam: investing in a standalone store, a chain of convenience stores, or co-investing with GS25 Vietnam to open stores, said a representative of the brand.

Franchised stores come in three models, with areas of 65-70 square meters, 100-120 square meters, or 150 square meters, respectively.

Franchisees will have to spend at most VND2 billion ($86,260) to invest in a convenience store, and will be able to source products from major distributors in Vietnam or import South Korean goods, said Nguyen Thi Hong Trang, General Director of GS25 Vietnam.

South Korean convenience store chain GS25 entered Vietnam in January last year, opening a store in Ho Chi Minh through a joint venture with the Son Kim Group, which operates in retail, real estate and media sectors.

GS25 Vietnam currently owns 50 stores, and aims to open 2,500 nationwide after 10 years. Opening the business to franchisees is a major step towards realizing this goal, its brand representative said.

According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, on average, 1-3 retail stores are needed per 1,000 people. However, only 7,012 stores are considered modern retail stores in Vietnam.

More than a third of Vietnamese households shop at convenience stores or mini supermarkets, with an average frequency of 10 times per year, data compiled by research firm Kantar Worldpanel shows. 

The UK-based Institute of Grocery Distribution forecasts that convenience stores in Vietnam would grow in double digits over the next four years and account for 37.4 percent of retail revenue by 2021    

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