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Thai retailer opens Tops Club, a membership-only supermarket

Around 70% of items on sale are imports, for which members can get a discount

Around 70% of the items Tops Club sells are imports. (Photo courtesy of Central Retail)

BANGKOK -- Thailand's Central Retail opened a new membership-only supermarket in Bangkok targeting the Southeast Asian country's growing middle class.

The Thai retail giant also plans to spend 30 billion baht ($790 million) over the next five years in neighboring Vietnam, with the aim of more than doubling the number of supermarkets there. The company wants to become an industry leader in both countries.

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