AEON’s Vision for the Future: Exploring Integration of Tsuruha and Welcia to Create a 2 Trillion Yen Powerhouse in the Drugstore Industry

Aeon is reportedly considering the integration of Tsuruha Holdings and Welcia Holdings, potentially giving rise to a 2 trillion yen-scale drugstore powerhouse. As Aeon serves as the parent company of Welcia and is in the final stages of negotiations for acquiring shares from the investment fund holding over 10% of Tsuruha HD stocks.

Tsuruha HD is contemplating going private, aiming to sidestep shareholder pressures and focus on growth strategies. The anticipated acquisition for going private is estimated to be around 600 billion yen, with several private equity funds expressing interest.

Playing a crucial role in the restructuring of the drugstore industry, Aeon holds a 13.35% stake in Tsuruha HD. In the industry, the merger of Matsumotokiyoshi Holdings and Cocokara Fine has secured its position as the third-largest, and if the integration of Tsuruha and Welcia materializes, it could become a formidable competitor.

Aeon, recognized as a retail industry giant, not only owns Welcia HD as a subsidiary but also has investments in numerous other drugstore chains. While the integration and restructuring of Aeon-affiliated drugstores are considered challenging, the industry is closely watching Aeon’s moves amidst these ongoing transformations.

Source: Nikkei Feb 24, 2024

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