South Korea - News & Analysis

25 September 2019
South Korea’s BGF Retail Co., the operator of convenience store chain CU, will open its first outlet in Vietnam by June 2020. Second offshore operations after Mongolia The retailer has signed a franchise agreement with a Vietnam-based convenience store operator backed by local companies. BGF Retail will share its brand and knowledge in operations, while the Vietnamese partner will be respon...
20 September 2019
South Korean retail conglomerate Shinsegae is developing a cashierless grocery store modelled on the Amazon Go concept. Use “just walk out” technology Like Amazon Go, the company will use "just walk out" technology and sensors to automatically detect what shoppers are buying. Thirty cameras and sensors will track what shoppers take from the shelves and what they put back. Shoppers wil...
22 August 2019
Large brick-and-mortar retailers can no longer wait for the customers to visit their stores. New and more convenient delivery services driven by demand The country’s food delivery market is changing quickly and expanding in scope, driven by underlying demographic shifts. One-person households account for 25% of the total households and will reach 35% by 2035. The demand for delivery of fres...
13 August 2019
Shinsegae’s Emart announced this week that it plans to raise KRW1tn (US$820m) by selling assets and will buy back stocks worth some KRW100bn to boost shareholder value. Posting loss for the first time The action came as the country’s leading retailer saw net profit loss in the second quarter of the year for the first time in its history. Compared with a net profit of KRW95bn a year ago, thi...
26 June 2019
SSG.com, the ecommerce unit of South Korea’s retail conglomerate, Shinsegae, launches early morning delivery service in June. Order by midnight, deliver by 6 a.m. Orders can be placed as late as midnight with deliveries guaranteed to arrive by 6 a.m. the next day. The service covers up to 10,000 items, including fresh food, bakery, cooked meals, pet food and baby products such as nappies an...
18 April 2019
Coupang’s revenue for 2018 hits KRW 4.42tn (US$ 3.5bn), a new record for Korea’s ecommerce market. Growth supported by heavy investment The retailer’s revenue grew by 65% over 2018, an impressive leap from 40% growth in the previous year. Its losses also jumpred to KRW 1.1tn last year from KRW 638.8 bn in 2017. The eight-year-old retailer has lost money every year and will continue to inves...
17 April 2019
Customers at select GS25 convenience stores in South Korea will be able to charge shared electric bicycles from June. Shared electric bicycles and charging facilities GS Retail's convenience chain, GS25, is setting up charging facilities for 800 electric bicycles in partnership with GoGoSing at its stores. The service will be made available in Gangnam District in Seoul and Pangyo in Gyeongg...
28 March 2019
Rossmann, the German drugstore part owned by A.S. Watson, will begin selling products in South Korea in May, with products shipped directly from Germany. Direct-to-market model Rossmann plans to make “full-scale inroads into the domestic health and beauty market” of South Korea. A direct-to-market business model will be adopted, rather than stocking goods in stores. It is not clear when Ros...
22 March 2019
South Korea’s food manufacturing conglomerate Daesang Group is to sell its remaining stake in the convenience store chain, Ministop Korea, to its Japanese partner Aeon. A deal estimated at US$80m Daesang and Aeon are finalising the terms of the deal, which is estimated at US$80m. Both parties aim to complete the sale within March. Aeon currently owns 76.06% Ministop Korea, Daesang 20% an...
20 March 2019
Asian private-equity firm MBK Partners withdrew a planned Homeplus property float due to weak interest. A potential US$1.5bn plan MBK was planning to spin off 51 of the South Korean retailer’s hypermarket buildings in cities including Busan and Incheon through a US$1.5bn float of a real estate investment trust (REIT). The proceeds were potentially to be used to pay off most of a hefty fi...