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Seven-Eleven to test shorter hours in labor-short Japan

McDonald's and other stores also move away from 24-hour operations

Seven-Eleven Japan has built its production and distribution operations around 24-hour store operations. (Photo by Wakako Iguchi)

TOKYO -- Seven-Eleven Japan is reassessing its mainstay 24-hour business model as franchise owners grapple with severe personnel shortages, testing shorter store hours at select locations to gauge the impact on earnings.

Starting in mid-March, 10 directly run stores will adopt the company's namesake operating hours of 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. in trials running at least a few months to see changes in sales and customer traffic. The convenience store operator under Seven & i Holdings will review the results to decide what to do with franchise locations, which account for 98% of all stores.

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