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Lawson faces KDDI privatization bid

by SuperiorInvest

A customer leaves a Lawson Inc. convenience store in Tokyo, Japan, Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2020.

Bloomberg | Bloomberg | fake images

Shares in Lawson, Japan’s third-largest convenience store chain, rose 18% after receiving an offer to go private.

The offer would see conglomerate Mitsubishi and mobile operator KDDI jointly manage the convenience store chain, with each owning a 50% stake.

KDDI plans to buy shares at 10,360 yen ($70.07) each from other shareholders in April, with the process expected to be completed around September.

This represents a 16% premium to Lawson’s closing share price of 8,913 yen on Tuesday, valuing the offer at about 500 billion yen ($3.4 billion).

KDDI currently owns a 2.11% stake in Lawson, while Mitsubishi owns 50.11%.

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Mitsubishi said in a news release that Lawson shares will be delisted from the Tokyo Stock Exchange once the deal is completed.

Kyodo News reported that KDDI intends to leverage Lawson’s approximately 14,600 stores nationwide to promote its banking and insurance products, while also providing smartphone support services remotely in stores.

Furthermore, KDDI will also offer Lawson products and services at 2,200 of its mobile phone sales points nationwide.

In turn, Kyodo also added that Lawson will implement KDDI technologies to improve the efficiency of its distribution network and strengthen the functions of its stores during disasters.

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