日本自动售卖机验证身份 推动便民店销售
2008年07月25日来源:烟草在线据路透社报道编译

  烟草在线据路透社报道编译  由于吸烟者避开需要身份验证的新自动售卖机而纷纷涌入日本的便民连锁店,这些连锁店将于7月份公布两位数的销售增长,这是经过多年的收入疲软状况后一个令人满意的增长。

  数个月来,在同店销售下滑,或只取得微弱的增长之后,由于日本许多地方强制性要求使用新的身份验证功能,FamilyMart公司和Lawson公司的收入从5月起恢复了增长。

  这两家公司的股票在过去三个月中反弹了22%,超过了下滑4%的东京证券交易所零售次级指数的表现。

  日本第三大便民商店经营商FamilyMart公司说,到目前为止,7月份的同店销售额增长了14-15%,这是该公司在至少17年来取得的最大月销售额增长。

  日本第二大便民店经营商Lawson说,公司本月取得了两位数的同店销售额增长,这是公司8年前公开上市交易以来取得的最好的增长。一位业内消息来源说,Seven & I公司的子公司7-11取得了接近10%的增长。

  从3月份开始,日本某些地区的自动售卖机开始要求使用名为Taspo的特殊智能身份卡,而如今,这个要求已经覆盖日本所有地区。

  这些公司中的一名拒绝透露身份的消息来源说:“坦率地说,Taspo因素是便民店销售取得增长的主要原因。”

  对反烟情绪十分谨慎的便民连锁店一直不愿意公开提及它们销售增长的本质是意外之财。

  公司的代表们也说,正如不断上涨的油价促使许多消费者避免外出就餐,却从便民店购买膳食,从而使得便民店销售增长一样,超市提价及有利的天气条件也帮助提高了销售。

  但分析师们警告说,这种实惠可能只会在一年内有帮助,因为各个公司仍然面临着在拥有老龄化人口的高度饱和的市场中创造增长的令人畏缩的挑战。雷曼兄弟公司的零售分析师Yasuyuki Sasaki说:“如果认为这是便民店作为一种零售模式而取得复苏的证明是危险的。”

  他说:“明年,情况可能会恢复到与去年投资者们对便民店感兴趣时相同的状况,那时,便民店必须在海外市场或以新的商店模式寻求增长。”

  在7月22日下午的交易中,FamilyMart的股票上涨了3.5%,达到4440日元,而Lawson的股票则上涨了2.2%,达到5110日元。在过去3个月中增长了4%的Seven & I公司的股票则增长了1.7%,达到3070日元。

Tobacco sales lift Japan convenience stores in July

Reuters - Tuesday, July 22
By Taiga Uranaka

  TOKYO, July 22 - Japan's major convenience store chains are set to post double-digit sales growth in July, a welcome boost after years of weak revenue, as cigarette smokers shun new ID-requiring vending machines and flock to their stores.

  After seeing same-store sales fall or post only meagre growth for months, FamilyMart Co Ltd and Lawson Inc have seen revenue pick up from May as use of a new ID function became compulsory in more parts of Japan.

  Shares in both firms have rallied 22 percent over the last three months, outperforming a 4 percent fall in Tokyo stock exchange's retail sub-index.

  FamilyMart, the nation's No. 3 convenience store operator, said July same-store sales are up 14-15 percent so far, its biggest monthly sales jump in at least 17 years.

  Japan's No. 2 operator Lawson said it is seeing double-digit same-store sales this month, the best growth since it went public eight years ago. An industry source said Seven-Eleven, a unit Seven & I Holdings Co Ltd, was seeing growth of close to 10 percent.

  Vending machines began to require the special smart ID card, called Taspo, in certain areas of the country from March and the requirement now covers all areas of Japan.

  "To be frank, the Taspo factor is the top reason for the growth," said a source at one of the companies, who declined to be identified.

  Convenience store chains, wary of anti-smoking sentiment, have been reluctant to refer publicly to the windfall nature of their sales boost.

  Company representatives also said price hikes at supermarkets and favourable weather have helped sales, as have rising gas prices that have prompted many consumers to avoid dining out and instead buy meals from convenience stores.

  But analysts warn the boon is likely to only help for a year as the companies still face the daunting challenge of creating growth amid a highly saturated market with an ageing population. "It's dangerous to assume that this is proof of a revival of convenience stores as a retail format," said Lehman Brothers retail analyst Yasuyuki Sasaki.

  "Next year, it will probably be back to the same situation as last year when few investors were interested in convenience stores, which have to find growth in overseas markets or in a new store format," he said.

  FamilyMart's shares rose 3.5 percent to 4,440 yen in afternoon trade while Lawson shares were up 2.2 percent at 5,110 yen. Seven & I, which has gained 4 percent over the past three months, was 1.7 percent higher at 3,070 yen.

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