News ReleaseLawson store to open in Spring 2016 in Wuhan, Hubei, China


TOKYO, JAPAN, 2 03, 2016


First Japanese convenience store to enter central China
Lawson signs an area license agreement with local retailer Zhongbai Supermarket

On Tuesday February 2, 2016, in Wuhan city in Hubei province, China, Lawson, Inc. signed an area license agreement with Zhongbai Supermarket Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of Zhongbai Holdings Group Co., Ltd. The first LAWSON store in Wuhan city will be opened in spring 2016, as the first Japanese convenience store chain to enter the central China region.

Under the area license agreement, Zhongbai Supermarket will develop Lawson convenience stores that complement the characteristic Wuhan consumers, capitalizing on Lawson’s experience of store management and product development and the Zhongbai Group’s strong customer base across a network of 1,000 hypermarket, supermarkets and department stores. First, 10 LAWSON stores will be opened in Wuhan city in 2016. The reach will then be expanded to other parts of Hubei province, with a three-year target of 200 stores and a five-year target of 500 stores.

Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province, has a population of approximately 10 million and is the biggest center of commerce and industry in the central China region. Consumer lifestyles have changed as the region’s economy has developed, and, as a result, demand for convenience store products is expected to increase, especially among the younger generation. Lawson plans to expand to other provinces by partnering with major local partners and offer greater convenience to consumers in central China.

Lawson opened its first store in China in Shanghai in 1996. By the end of December 2015, Lawson had expanded its network in China to 652 stores (Shanghai city and surrounding area: 461 stores; Chongqing city: 107 stores; Dalian city: 50 stores; Beijing city: 34 stores). The company plans to accelerate its store expansion in China by exploiting the knowledge it has amassed in specific areas from investing and opening its own stores, and by signing area license agreements with strong local companies in areas where it has less experience. The Zhongbai Supermarket agreement represents the first such area license for Lawson.

Lawson's Store-opening Milestones in China
February 1996 Established joint-venture company, Shanghai Hualian Lawson, Inc.
July 1996 Opened the first convenience store in Shanghai
April 2010 Established Lawson's fully owned company, Chongqing Lawson, Inc.
July 2010 Opened the first store in Chongqing
September 2011 Established Dalian Lawson, Inc.
May 2015 Establishes Lawson (China) Holdings, Inc., to control all China business
May 2015 Established Beijing Lawson, Inc.


Company name Zhongbai Holdings Group Co., Ltd(holding company)
Business location Wuhan City, Hubei, China
Established November 8, 1989
Capital 680 million (CNY)
(listed on a Shenzhen B stock exchange from May 1997)
Total sales 16.9 billion(CNY)
Number of employees 37,727
Number of stores 1,065 stores
- Hypermarket: 244
- Supermarket: 769
- Department store: 11
-Consumer-electronics retailer: 41
Main areas of business operation Wuhan(986 stores)and Chongqing(79 stores)

As of the end of October 2015

<Lawson, Inc.>

Company name Lawson, Inc.
Business location 1-11-2 Osaki, Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo
Name and title of representative director Genichi Tamatsuka,
President and CEO, Representative Director
Main areas of business operation Development of the Lawson convenience store franchise chain
Number of convenience stores Japan: 12,254
China: 652
Thailand: 46
Indonesia: 38
Philippines: 16
Hawaii: 2

As of the end of December 2015