Japanese retailer Seven & I Holdings has formed a venture with Chinese food manufacturer Zhongdi Group to develop 7-Eleven stores in China.

Government officials in the eastern city of Qingdao have approved the establishment of the Shan Dong Zhong Di Convenience Co. venture. 

The first stores are scheduled to open this year, Seven & I said, although it did not reveal how many outlets would be set up.

The two firms have invested CNY120m (US$18.9m) in the venture, with Zhongdi holding a 65% equity interest and Seven & I a 35% interest.

Zhongdi vice president Ming Jin has been appointed chairman of the venture. Seven-Eleven president Fumio Inoue will be vice chairman.

“The influence on consolidated results for the fiscal year ending February 2013 is expected to be minimal but this establishment is expected to contribute to improvement in financial results over the medium to long term,” Seven & I said.

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