• Investing in Japanese Convenience

    By Matthew Luke - July 3, 2013 | Tickers: CST, SVNDY, VLO

    Formally a NYSE-traded company founded in Dallas nearly 90 years ago, 7-Eleven was acquired in 2005 by the Tokyo-based retail giant Seven & i Holdings Co. (NASDAQOTH: SVNDY). 7-Eleven had actually been a Japanese company long before that point, though. In the 1980s, 7-Eleven’s mismanagement nearly led the company right into bankruptcy. The company was bailed out by its largest franchisee, the Japanese Ito-Yokado, which purchased a substantial stake in more »

  • Unknown Foreign Opportunities: Seven & i Holdings

    By Matthew Luke - February 5, 2013 | Tickers: AMZN, MCD, SVNDY

    Most companies with a $27 billion market capitalization are household names (or at the very least, well known to everyday investors). While Tokyo Stock Exchange-traded Seven & i Holdings (NASDAQOTH: SVNDY) (TYO: 3382) is a household name in its home country of Japan, it is practically unknown in America. Although the company itself is unknown on the American side of the Pacific Ocean, you are likely aware of the company’s biggest claim to fame: the global convenience store 7-Eleven.

  • The Mayor, the Soda Ban and the Joys of Unintended Consequences

    By Matthew Luke - September 19, 2012 | Tickers: KO, PEP, SVNDY, SBUX

    Last week was a great or awful week, depending on which side of a controversial new regulation you agree with. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg was successful in his attempt to ban sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces, with the New York City Board of Health approving the new regulation 8-0 (with one abstention). There was little doubt that the regulation would be approved as Mayor Bloomberg had personally appointed each and every member of the Board of Health… but still. This regulation has soda industry giants The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) and PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP) worried about the implications of such a regulation, as well as the possible precedent it sets for other municipalities thinking about instituting a similar soda ban. However you fell about the new regulation, however well intention it may be, the new ban is full of many unintended consequences that have the potentially of doing more harm than good. Three of the biggest such unintended consequences are highlighted below.

  • Investing in the Profitable Franchise Model

    By Matthew Luke - September 7, 2012 | Tickers: KO, MCD, PEP, SVNDY

    As one of the great American business innovations of the nineteenth century, franchising has proven itself over the decades to be an extremely successful and profitable business model. The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) was one of the first companies to put franchising into use, which they still do to this very day. Operating under a type of franchising known as the ‘bottler system,’ The Coca-Cola Company enters into franchise agreements more »

  • The Retail Story Nobody Discusses

    By Matthew Luke - September 7, 2012 | Tickers: AMZN, CASY, SVNDY, PTRY

    Convenience stores are one of the few areas of retail rarely discussed in the US financial media. It is a shame because investors may be missing out on one of the next great investment stories. A company in this space that is very quietly becoming one of the world’s largest retailers of any type is Seven & i Holdings Co. (NASDAQOTH: SVNDYNASDAQOTH: SVNDY.PK)), a giant in Japanese retail. Seven & I Holdings’ main claim to fame is that is the parent company of the largest convenience store brand in the world: 7-Eleven.