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Dai-Ei to close CoCo Mart supermarkets

Date Posted: 2002-07-25

The financially troubled department store chain Dai-Ei announced that is will close all of it’s money losing supermarket CoCo Mart stores in September.

Earlier, Dai-Ei announced that it would close three of its department stores in Okinawa in August. Those slated to be closed are Hyper Mart in Awase, Dai-Ei department store in Itoman and Kouz discount store in Kadena Town.

CoCo Mart officials said that with closing of the supermarkets, 99 people would lose their jobs. That will add to the 671 that will lose their jobs when the department stores close at the end of August.

CoCo Mart chain opened in 1983 in mainland Japan, and was established in Okinawa three years later. However, according to the company, it failed to make a profit here ever.

Representatives of Dai-Ei workers’ union met Dai-Ei directors Saturday, and conveyed their concerns over the company’s decision. They urged the company to take every possible step to ease the impact on their workers, and asked them to help find employment to those who will be fired.

The Okinawa Prefecture Employment Bureau has set up a special section to help people left jobless with Dai-Ei closures. The bureau is also enlisting the help of local municipalities to alleviate the problem.

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