International News - 7-Eleven in bid to cut investment costs by opening smaller US outlets

The world's largest convenience store chain, 7-Eleven, plans to cut investment costs by opening smaller stores in the US.

Chief executive officer James Keyes said the strategy will mimic that of its Asian franchisees by opening closely-clustered 90 sq m stores, rather than the 280 sq m sites in the US.

In the next two years, the smaller stores will account for half of the US portfolio compared to 10 per cent now. The company has 17,500 Asian franchises, mostly in Japan, Korea and Thailand.

This week, rumours surfaced in the Asian press that the Thai franchisee, Charoen Pokphand Group, is seeking a licence from the US to open stores in Cambodia and Vietnam.

The Thai company has said it is seeking a partner in China for an expansion drive in the country.