Jollibee completes divestment from US business Chow Fun


JOLLIBEE Foods Corp., one of the biggest quick service food chains in the world, has completed its divestment from US-based restaurant Jinja Bar and Bistro as a part of its strategy to reorganize its international ventures and focus on building its larger businesses.

In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, JFC said on Friday that it has finalized the divestment of its 80.55-percent stake in Chow Fun Holdings LLC (Chow Fun) through its offshore investment unit Jollibee Worldwide Pte. Ltd. (JWPL).

Chow Fun is the operator of Jinja Bar and Bistro, a US-based restaurant serving Pacific Island and Asian cuisine and cocktails.

“Chow Fun paid JWPL $1.6 million (or about P80 million) to redeem JWPL’s 2,900 Class A Membership units, equivalent to 80.55 percent equity shares in Chow Fun,” JFC said.

Earlier in the month, JFC announced it was divesting from Chow “to concentrate its resources in building its larger businesses.”

JFC holds a 40 percent ownership in burger joint Smashburger with 378 stores in the United States and its other businesses in there include 34 Jollibee outlets, 33 Red Ribbon stores, and 16 Chowking stores.

Jinja Bar and Resto under Chow Fun has three outlets in New Mexico, two in Albuquerque, and one in Santa Fe.

JFC acquired 12 percent equity share in Chow Fun on July 25, 2008 then increased its shareholdings to 80.55 percent on March 31, 2011.

Earlier this month, JFC via JWPL unloaded its 55 percent stake in Chinese restaurant chain San Pin Wang for 90 million renminbi, or about P648.9 million, in a bid to focus on its bigger Chinese venture, Yonghe King.

JFC has one of the biggest food service networks in the world with 3,236 stores to date — 2,565 in the Philippines and 671 abroad.

Other overseas businesses of the group through joint ventures include: 60 percent of Vietnam-based Superfoods Group which owns and operates the brands Highlands Coffee and Pho 24, and is a franchisee of Hard Rock Café; and a 48-percent stake in 12 Hotpot (China) 16. These joint ventures total to 594 stores worldwide which are currently not included in JFC’s consolidated store count.

The group’s brand network is composed of Jollibee, Chowking, Greenwich, Red Ribbon, Mang Inasal, and Burger King in the Philippines and in other parts of the world; Yonghe King, Hong Zhuang Yuan, and Dunkin’ Donuts in China; and Smashburger in the US.

JFC set a capital expenditure of P10.4 billion this year, which is more than double the P4.7 billion capex in 2015, to fund new stores and the renovations of existing outlets.

The company’s aggressive expansion is in line with its five-year plan toward 2020 to grow its net income and revenues by double digits yearly in a bid to land in the Top 5 quick service restaurants (QSR) in the world.

At present, JFC is the largest in Asia and 10th largest QSR in the world in terms of market capitalization, according to a Bloomberg data earlier cited by the company.


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