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How Australia’s 7-Eleven stores could take inspiration from Japan

Trying 7-Eleven food in Japan

Source: TikTok/CurvySam

Could Australia’s 7-Eleven convenience stores be getting a makeover inspired by the cult Japanese versions of the chain?

And what is it about Japanese 7-Eleven stores that make them so popular for locals and tourists alike, particularly on social media?

Last month 7-Eleven International LLC, which is a joint venture between 7-Eleven, Inc and Seven-Eleven Japan, completed its acquisition of 7-Eleven Australia.

7-Eleven stores in Japan offer different products to what you can get at 7-Eleven stores in Australia and other western countries.

When western tourists go to 7-Eleven stores in Japan such differences are clear, and many post on social media about the variety and quality of products available in the Land of the Rising Sun.

@addyroad

This info is so valuable #japan #japanhacks #japanlife #7eleven #japaneseconveniencestore

♬ original sound – Adele Collette

“It is about continuing to grow our store network in Australia and providing unrivalled customer experiences and quality products,” 7-Eleven Australia CEO and managing director Angus McKay said in April about the deal.

“My team and I are looking forward to taking advantage of 7-Eleven International’s deep experience in convenience retailing with the leadership of executive chairman Shin Abe.”

So could Australia get a more Japanese-like 7-Eleven experience? At a KPMG retail seminar this week, McKay hinted what might come of 7-Eleven convenience stores in Australia.

7-Eleven moving to offer more

“We’ve been pushing for many years now to move away from being a pure chips and chocolate retailer,” McKay said, according to news.com.au.

He also hinted that more fresh food could be on offer in the future.

In a statement provided to TND, McKay said the company was excited about the direction 7-Eleven stores in Australia could go in under international leadership.

@joanchloedeguzman

Japan really is living in 2050 🇯🇵 7-Eleven Fresh Fruit Smoothies ❤️ #fruitsmoothie #7eleven #japan #hightech #japanesefood

♬ original sound – 🇵🇭 Joan in JAPAN 🇯🇵 – 🇵🇭 Joan in JAPAN 🇯🇵

“We’ve identified opportunities to transform 7-Eleven Australia’s merchandise and fuel offer, expand product assortment and introduce new high-quality fresh foods,” he said.

“Japanese stores set the high mark around the global network. The way they present themselves, the store standards, the way they operate is just seamless and we’ve got a lot to learn from them.”

McKay added Australia’s stores will be able to work “more closely” with its international counterparts, while focusing on “customers with convenience and value, and continuing to make the everyday easier so Australians can live a good life”.

The Japanese difference

In Japan, 7-Eleven stores are so much more than your run-of-the-mill convenience store.

There’s hot traditional Japanese food on offer, like Oden soups, and usually there are plenty of noodles to choose from, plus microwaves and boiling water to make it there and then.

7-Eleven sandwiches are popular Down Under, but in Japan they have a wide range of fried chicken sandwiches, fruit-filled dessert sandwiches and fluffy egg sandwiches.

Beyond food, there are plenty of services on offer in Japan too.

@her.atlas

7-ELEVEN JAPAN … OMURICE (fried rice and omelet) #foodreview #tastyjapan #lifeabroad #japanesefood

♬ original sound – her.atlas

According to Japan’s 7-Eleven website, you can copy, scan and print documents, apply for insurance or qualification exams in store.

People can have parcels delivered to their closest store, while some have a photo service and others have coin laundries.

All those services are in addition to what an Australian would expect at a 7-Eleven here – food, treats, drinks and magazines.

“Customers will still want service that is fast and efficient. We’ve usually only got a 90-second transaction to impress our customers,” he said.

“The customers have got to feel they are getting good value for the time they spend with us, as well as value for money.

“It is about continuing to grow our store network in Australia and providing unrivalled customer experiences and quality products.”

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