INTERVIEW: Lawson to Strengthen "Bento" Business

Economy

Tokyo, Jan. 4 (Jiji Press)--Japanese convenience store chain Lawson Inc. <2651> will enhance its "bento" boxed meal business further amid intensifying competition with rivals, President and CEO Sadanobu Takemasu said in a recent interview with Jiji Press.

"Boundaries have disappeared between industries" over bento services after restaurants started offering them and supermarkets expanded their lineups amid a surge in demand among stay-at-home consumers during the COVID-19 pandemic, Takemasu said.

Lawson plans to improve the quality and convenience of its bento meals by beefing up in-store cooking and reinforcing home delivery services.

Looking back on 2022, Takemasu said, "It was a year when movements emerged in both ways to protect livelihoods and consume high-quality items" amid rising prices for food and other products.

He predicted that people would increasingly focus on maintaining their living standards this year. The recovery in consumption, which started in the summer of 2022, is likely to be short-lived, he said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press