Japanese retail group Aeon will build the Aeon Mall shopping complex in Yangon, Myanmar, with an investment of $180 million, marking its first market entry into the Southeast Asian nation.
The Aeon Mall shopping complex will be built through a joint venture between Aeon and Shwe Taung Group, a local conglomerate. The venture will be 70% owned by Aeon Mall, part of the Aeon group, and 30% by Shwe Taung.
Construction will begin in the first half of 2021 and aimed to open in 2023.
Aeon leads other big retailers around the world in investing in Southeast Asia. In Cambodia, which is comparable with Myanmar in terms of per capita gross domestic product of about $1,500, the company already operates two outlets and has decided to open another.
Encouraged by the strong performance of its outlets in Cambodia, Aeon will begin operating in Myanmar to "capture a dominant market position in the absence of rivals," a company executive said.
"We are excited to enter into this strategic joint venture with Aeon Mall to bring fresher and more innovative retail and lifestyle concepts to Myanmar," said CEO of Shwe Taung Real Estate, Sandar Htun.
Shwe Taung is a major conglomerate in Myanmar, primarily engaged in real estate and construction and with a workforce of 6,800 as of 2018. It has operated six shopping centers in Myanmar since 1999, including the Junction City shopping complex that opened in central Yangon in 2017.