Dairy Farm International Holdings
|Traded as||SGX: D01
|Key people||Simon Keswick (Chairman)|
|Products||Food, hygiene products|
Dairy Farm International Holdings Limited is an Asian retail company with its legal base in Bermuda. A member of the Jardine Matheson Group, it is a major pan-Asian retailer involved in the processing and wholesaling of food and personal hygiene products in the Pacific region and in China. Jardine Strategic, a publicly listed holding company, has an attributable 78% stake in the firm. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange, with secondary listings on the Singapore and Bermuda stock exchanges.
As of 30th June 2013, the Group, its associates and joint ventures operated over 5,700 outlets; Wellcome/Food World (supermarkets), 50% share of Maxim's Catering (restaurants), cold Storage (supermarkets), Jasons Market Place/Market Place by Jasons/Jasons Food Hall (high end supermarkets), Shop N Save (discount supermarkets), Giant (hypermarkets), Mannings/Guardian (health and beauty) stores; it also operates 7-Eleven (convenience stores) throughout the region, and IKEA (home furnishings) stores in Hong Kong and Taiwan.
In 2012 the group, its associates and joint ventures operated over 5,700 outlets, employed over 97,000 people and had total annual sales in excess of US$11 billion.
Dairy Farm was set up in 1886 by Sir Patrick Manson, a Scottish surgeon, and five well known Hong Kong businessmen. They initially aimed to improve the health of Hong Kong people by providing them with non-contaminated cows' milk and to import a herd of dairy cattle so as to decrease the price of milk by more than half. The farm was located in Pok Fu Lam.
In 1890, Dairy Farm built a low-rise brick and stucco building on Lower Albert Road in Central for use as a cold storage warehouse. This warehouse was later renovated and expanded in 1913 to include a dairy shop, a room for meat smoking, a cold storage room for winter clothes and residency for its manager. The building later evolved into the company headquarters until the company moved in the 1970s. The abandoned building was acquired by the Hong Kong Fringe Club, a non-profit-making arts organisation in 1984, and has been carefully restored. This distinctive 19th century building, now known as the Old Dairy Farm Depot, is a well-known landmark in Central providing a wide variety of cultural activities and performances.
In 1904, Dairy Farm began importing frozen meat and opened its first retail store at the Central District depot. The second Dairy Farm store was established on Nathan Road, Kowloon towards the end of the war in 1918. Amongst other things, this store provided fishing boats in Hong Kong with large amounts of ice.
In 1960, Dairy Farm and Lane Crawford formed a merged food retailing operations and renamed these supermarkets as Dairy Lane under Dairy Lane Limited. This joint business was undone by the acquisition of the Wellcome chain in 1964.
In 1972, Dairy Farm was acquired by Hong Kong Land, a Jardines subsidiary. In 1986 Dairy Farm was relisted on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange after it was demerged from Hong Kong Land. Dairy Farm acquired a 50% interest in Maxim's at the same time. The 228-outlet 7-Eleven convenience store chain in Hong Kong was acquired in 1989 from Jardine Matheson.
Since 1999, Dairy Farm has continued to expand its footprint by acquiring supermarket and other retail operations in Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. Notably, it also acquired IKEA Hong Kong and Taiwan in 2002.
As of June 2011, Dairy Farm is 78% owned by Jardine Matheson Holdings.
- In 1998, Dairy Farm sold out its 49% interest in Nestlé Dairy Farm, set up in 1992 to develop dairy products factories throughout China, to Nestlé; on the merger of Kwik Save with Somerfield, Dairy Farm sold its 11% holding for US$290 million. Dairy Farm acquired 25% of the "No Frills" Kwik Save Group in 1987; Sold the 108-store Simago chain in Spain acquired in 1990.
- In March 2000, Dairy Farm sold its half share in DFI Géant, the Taiwan hypermarket opened in 1998 back to Casino, its joint venture partner.
- In 2001, the company sold the 287-store Franklins chain in Australia which it acquired in 1978. Its Hong Kong-based distribution business, Sims Trading, was sold to CITIC Pacific.
- In June 2002, the 61-store Woolworths chain in New Zealand acquired in 1990, was sold for US$337 million.
- In 2004, the Group's Hong Kong ice manufacturing business which began in 1918 was sold for US$107 million.
- The Hongs
- Wellcome/Food World
- Cold Storage
- Jasons Market Place/Market Place by Jasons
- Shop N Save
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