Matsumotokiyoshi, Cocokara Pinning High Hopes on Integration

Economy

Tokyo, Aug. 22 (Jiji Press)--Leaders of Matsumotokiyoshi Holdings Co. <3088> and Cocokara Fine Inc. <3098> on Thursday expressed high hopes on the major Japanese drug store operators' possible business integration.

"We can aim to become Asia's No. 1 drug store operator," Matsumotokiyoshi President Kiyoo Matsumoto told a joint press conference with Cocokara President Atsushi Tsukamoto in Tokyo.

The potential integration would be intended to "maximize" the two companies' corporate value, Tsukamoto said.

"We can help Cocokara raise its profit rate through the utilization of our business improvement methods," Matsumoto said, adding that he hopes the integrated entity would be able to post "maximum profits" through cuts in store operation costs and other measures.

The two companies agreed on Aug. 14 to start talks on integrating their operations. On Friday last week, they signed a memorandum of understanding stipulating Cocokara giving exclusive negotiating rights to Matsumotokiyoshi.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press