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[Graphic News] Number of convenience stores surpass 30,000

The number of convenience stores nationwide surpassed 30,000 as of the end of last month, with their offerings becoming more diversified to include prepackaged meals, brewed coffee as well as financial and delivery services.

There are currently 10,634 CU branches, followed by GS25 with 10,486, 7-Eleven with 8,486, Ministop with 2,326 and Withme, operated by Shinsegae, with 1,615.

Convenience stores have been seeing soaring popularity in line with the rise of one-person households and the aging population here, industry watchers said.

Their total sales increased from 12.8 trillion won ($11 billion) in 2013 to 17.2 trillion won in 2015, with the figure expected to exceed 20 trillion won by the end of this year.

The country’s first convenience store, a 7-Eleven branch, opened in May 1989 in Bangi-dong, Songpa district.