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Coronavirus

Japan pub operator Watami lands $90m in first test of state aid

Development Bank of Japan program aims to help restaurants adapt to pandemic

Watami, one of Japan's biggest pub chain operators, is expected to report a net loss of 11.6 billion yen for the year ended March. 

TOKYO -- Watami, one of Japan's biggest restaurant operators, is set to receive about 10 billion yen ($92.5 million) in financing from the Development Bank of Japan as the company seeks to change its business model and adapt to the new normal, Nikkei has learned.

The state-backed DBJ launched a program last month to support larger companies having at least 1 billion yen in capital in the coronavirus-ravaged restaurant and hotel industries. Watami is the first known borrower of the new scheme.

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