Overworked store owner battles 7-Eleven in Japan

Mr Mitoshi Matsumoto in his 7-Eleven outlet near Osaka on Christmas Day. Seven & I Holdings, which controls the 7-Eleven chain, terminated his franchise last week after he decided to close his store on New Year's Day, and it has stopped supplying him
Mr Mitoshi Matsumoto in his 7-Eleven outlet near Osaka on Christmas Day. Seven & I Holdings, which controls the 7-Eleven chain, terminated his franchise last week after he decided to close his store on New Year's Day, and it has stopped supplying him. PHOTO: NYTIMES

HIGASHI-OSAKA • The rice balls are gone. So are the juice bottles, which Mr Mitoshi Matsumoto priced to sell early. Most of his store's shelves stand empty, but he has kept some cigarette cartons and bottles of alcohol in the hope that his long-running battle with the 7-Eleven convenience store chain will end in his favour.

The company that controls the 7-Eleven chain, Seven & I Holdings, terminated Mr Matsumoto's franchise last week after he decided to close his store on New Year's Day, and it has stopped supplying him.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 09, 2020, with the headline 'Overworked store owner battles 7-Eleven in Japan'. Print Edition | Subscribe