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Seven & I to buy Net retailer Nissen

Kyodo

Retailer Seven & I Holdings Co. said Monday it will acquire a majority stake in catalog and online retailer Nissen Holdings Co. to diversify its sales channels.

Nissen supports the acquisition through the retailer’s information and technology unit, Seven & I Net Media Co., paving the way for the Seven & I group to enhance its Internet catalog retail business, the group said.

Under the takeover offer from Tuesday to Jan. 22, Seven & I Net Media seeks to purchase a 50.1 percent stake in Nissen for about ¥12.6 billion, or ¥410 per share, up 29.34 percent from the average closing price of the Kyoto-based company over the past month.

If the Seven & I group fails to acquire a majority stake in Nissen, it plans to acquire it by purchasing a block of newly issued shares from Nissen.

The acquisition is part of the Seven & I group’s strategy to strengthen its sales channels, including online and via smartphones. The group aims to enhance its product lineup and customer convenience through the acquisition, by allowing customers to buy the two companies’ products ranging from food and other daily necessities to clothing over the Internet.

Referring to the growing popularity of online shopping, Seven & I Holdings President Noritoshi Murata said at a press conference in Tokyo: “To cope with a change in the consumer market, our company and Nissen share the view that we need to have a strengthened relationship.”

Murata said the fusion between Nissen’s catalog and online sales expertise and Seven & I’s store network should create “new synergies.”

Nissen’s shares will remain listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange’s first section after the takeover, Seven & I Holdings said.