MANILA — The rising middle class in the Philippines has caught the eye of Japan’s FamilyMart (pictured above), which released plans for adding multiple locations in the country this year, the Philippine Daily Inquirer reports.

“The Philippine economy is growing and there is a growing need for convenience store services,” said Store Specialists Inc. executive vice president Anthony T. Huang.

Earlier in April, FamilyMart’s first Philippine branch welcomed shoppers.

The Philippines is the eighth market for FamilyMart apart from its home country of Japan.

FamilyMart units in the Philippines will stock Japanese food products and ready-to-eat meals.

“The first store...the high-quality design and service standards that everyone can expect for succeeding FamilyMart stores,” said the company in a statement.

“We believe that by jointly working on the FamilyMart business with the Ayala Group and the Rustan’s Group, two of the most trusted names in the Philippines, we will be able to leverage the Ayala Group’s extensive knowledge of store properties and its store development know-how, along with the Rustan’s Group’s retailing industry know-how, and thereby establish a store operation with a stronger foundation in the Philippines, as well as achieve faster store expansion.”