Aeon plans to quadruple product sourcing from Vietnam by 2025

15, Jun. 2019

A senior Aeon Co. official speaks at a meeting of its suppliers in Hanoi on June 12, 2019. (NNA/Kyodo)
A senior Aeon Co. official speaks at a meeting of its suppliers in Hanoi on June 12, 2019. (NNA/Kyodo)

HANOI, NNA - Retail giant Aeon Co. will seek to purchase $1 billion worth of products from Vietnam in 2025, with the nation seen as having great potential as a supplier of quality food for Japanese consumers.

The company will double the value of products it procures from Vietnam from the current level to $500 million in 2020 and expand it twofold over the following five-year period, a senior Aeon official told a meeting of its suppliers in Hanoi on Wednesday.

The total value of Vietnamese goods imported for sale at Aeon outlets in Japan rose 7.6 percent in 2018 from the previous year to 26.5 billion yen ($245 million), with clothing accounting for 55 percent of the total.

“Food has room to grow further,” said Eiji Shibata, executive officer and chief merchandising and logistics officer of the Japanese retailer, noting that the Aeon group's food sales make up about 70 percent of the total in Japan.

“For example, we could ship organic vegetables from Vietnam with the help of cutting-edge refrigeration technology,” he said.

Aeon, based in Chiba east of Tokyo, held the annual meeting for the second consecutive year in Vietnam after previously doing so in China, Japan and elsewhere in Southeast Asia, according to the company.

About 240 suppliers to Aeon Vietnam Co., its local store operator, and Aeon Topvalu Vietnam Co., a product development and procurement arm established in 2016, gathered for the Hanoi meeting.

Amid the escalating U.S.-China trade dispute, the Aeon group understands the value of Vietnam as a strategic base, Shibata said. (NNA/Kyodo)