Founder Of Japanese Home Improvement Chain Goes On A Building Binge
This story appears in the June 2022 issue of Forbes Asia. Subscribe to Forbes Asia
This story is part of Forbes’ coverage of Japan’s Richest 2022. See the full list here.
Akio Nitori, founder and CEO of discount furniture and interior goods giant Nitori Holdings, has been on a building binge to make Nitori a one-stop shop for the home. In April, the Tokyo-listed company announced plans to take a 10% stake, worth an estimated $96 million, in listed Japanese electronics retailer Edion.
This follows its nearly $1.7 billion deal in late 2020, in a rare hostile takeover in Japan, to acquire Tokyo-based Shimachu, a listed home-improvement center chain. It has also ramped up the pace of store openings, including large-scale urban outlets, and expanded into Southeast Asia with its first stores in Malaysia and Singapore earlier this year. In 2016, Nitori announced plans as part of its “Vision 2032” to more than triple annual sales to $24 billion and store numbers to 3,000 over the next decade.
In the fiscal year that ended in February, the firm posted its 35th consecutive year of record revenue and profit—despite a weaker yen making its imports more expensive, higher distribution costs and massive capital expenditures. The top line reached nearly ¥812 billion ($6.4 billion), jumping 13%, while ordinary income rose to about ¥142 billion, up almost 3%. Still, as part of a broader stock market decline, his net worth dropped 44% to $2.9 billion.