Realignment in Japan's drugstore sector may gather pace, even after the failure of proposals put forward this summer by an overseas investment fund for management structures conducive to mergers and acquisitions.

At shareholders meetings of two major drugstore operators in August, the fund proposed appointments of outside directors with good knowledge of M&As. The proposals were voted down at both meetings, but some shareholders emphasized the significance of industry reorganization.

One analyst described realignment in the drugstore sector as "a natural course of development."