Temasek Holdings is reportedly in talks to sell its stake in beauty and health retailer, A.S. Watson, according to Bloomberg and Reuter’s sources. Temasek invested approximately US$5.7 billion in the retailer in 2014. A.S. Watson Group has over 14,500 stores in 24 markets. It is also a member of multinational conglomerate CK Hutchison Holdings. Marketing has reached out to Temasek Holdings for comment.
According to Bloomberg’s sources, Temasek’s decision to buy the stake years ago was in intention that Watsons will go public. However, A.S Watson had pushed back the initial public offering. Nonetheless, A.S. Watson Group has been busy. It recently inked a deal with Yonghui Superstores and Tencent Holdings to form a 40:50:10 joint venture to create the largest grocery retail business in Guangdong, China.
PARKnSHOP has been operating in the Guangdong Province for 34 years and has brought an extensive store network and brand recognition, while Yonghui Superstore is a booming Chinese hi-tech retailing experiencing strong growth through their innovative pursuits.
The partnership will create a new brand called “PARKnSHOP-Yonghui”, combining ASW’s current PARKnSHOP China supermarket asset with Yonghui’s portfolio in Guangdong to form a store network of over 70 stores and 2.2 million loyalty members base.
Meanwhile the brand also planned to open 50 more Colorlab by Watsons, the new concept makeup store partnered with L’Oreal, across China by the end of 2018. This comes following the success of four Colorlab stores launched earlier this year. The first Colorlab store opened in Shenzhen in January, then two in Guangzhou and one in Shanghai. These new experience-based makeup stores are popular, with annual sales of cosmetics up 74% since opening (compared to sales of a previous Watsons store which took the site).