News spread quickly to many ears about Family Mart’s plans to open a local branch here in Malaysia earlier this year and spread even quicker when Family Mart Malaysia announced the opening of their pilot store located at Wisma Lim Foo Yong, Jalan Raja Chulan on 11th November 2016. I managed to find time to visit the store in the evening of its first day of opening.
I won’t be writing about the history of Family Mart or anything about its popularity, but rather, my thoughts about Family Mart Malaysia compared to my experience visiting Family Mart during my trip to Japan last year.
Family Mart boasts greatly for their hot and ready-to-go foods, and truly, they have them prepared for you right off the shelf. Like in Japan, you can have hot piping Oden, freshly brewed coffee, ready-made snacks as well as ready-made bentos which you can heat up using their microwave. There’s even a shelf lined with freshly baked goods. All of these available 24-hours everyday.
Other than all that was mention above and Family Mart branded foods, almost everything else is no different than the things you’d find in any other convenience store. Sad life for people looking for fancy Japanese imports. The ramune here is probably the cheapest in KL, though.
Like Family Mart Japan, Malaysia’s branch stocks a large variety of products together with their food items, keeping their identity as a convenience store, perhaps a bit too large in variety. The main and obvious difference between the two Family Marts is that they stock familiar, local products according to the country it is located in.
Family Mart vs 7-Eleven vs KK Mart
One of the common question I had is how Family Mart competes with other convenience stores that are already widely available in Malaysia? I will be omitting out 99 Speed Mart as it is not open for 24-hours.
One of the staff replied to me that Family Mart’s focus is different compared to 7-E and KK. Their goal is to provide hot ready-to-eat or ready-to-go food all day long whereas 7-Eleven is an all-rounder convenience store and KK Mart is a 24-hour grocery store. This is why Family Mart easily stands out among these competitors.
Family Mart’s Services
It is very frustrating whenever Pos Laju delivers your parcel and leaves you the sorry ticket when you’re not around, or when you happen to be in the bath and had to make time to go to the nearby Pos Laju branch to pick up your package.
Family Mart provides a service called FamiCollect where you can redirect the courier to send your package a nearby Family Mart and you can collect it from them anytime. Whereas FamiSend allows you to have Family Mart help you send your package. These two services basically uses Family Mart as a third-party to do your shipping work. This service will be available in the future once Family Mart Malaysia gains permissions from known couriers as per mentioned by the store staff.
I am personally excited and grateful of what Family Mart has brought and will be bringing to Malaysia. I find the idea of providing fresh ready food around the clock to be a good idea, but quoting from a friend of mine, Family Mart is best to branch out to districts in Malaysia rather than flooding the country like 7-Eleven. Well, that is all I have to say about this franchise and I hope for it grow strong in Malaysia.