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INTERVIEW: Kansai Super Market Resolved for Survival

INTERVIEW: Kansai Super Market Resolved for Survival

   Osaka, Jan. 14 (Jiji Press)--Kansai Super Market Ltd. <9919>, which recently made headlines as it became a takeover target, is resolved to survive intensifying industry competition partly by offering a range of products satisfying local needs, its president, Katsuhiro Hayashi, has stressed.
   The business environment surrounding Kansai Super Market, now under the aegis of H2O Retailing Corp. <8242>, is increasingly tough due to some discount supermarkets making forays into its main service area--the Kansai region of western Japan.
   But Hayashi, who took office last month, said in an interview that his company, based in the city of Itami, Hyogo Prefecture, part of the Kansai region, will be able to "boost its raison d'etre by offering a wider range of products than discount supermarkets do."
   H2O Retailing beat discount supermarket operator OK Corp., which operates mainly in the Tokyo metropolitan area, in the battle for control of Kansai Super Market, making it a subsidiary last month.
   Next month, Kansai Super Market is set to transfer its operations to new "Kansai Super Market" and convert itself into an intermediate holding company, named Kansai Food Market, which will control the new company, and Izumiya Co. and Hankyu Oasis Co., both H2O Retailing supermarket affiliates based in the city of Osaka, the capital of the namesake prefecture in the Kansai region.

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