• Jollibee to open stores in Malaysia, Indonesia in next 2 years

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    LEADING fast food chain Jollibee Foods Corp. (JFC) said its flagship brand Jollibee will enter the Malaysian and Indonesian markets in the next two years as part of its strategy to expand international operations.

    “Hopefully, [we’ll enter Indonesia and Malaysia] in the next two years,” JFC chief financial officer Ysmael Bayson told reporters on the sidelines of the EJAP-ING Bank Economic Forum on Wednesday.

    Bayson said JFC usually enters an international market with five to 10 store openings in the first three to five years. They will likely do the same in Indonesia and Malaysia.

    “Usually we start slow and we learn the market first,” he added.

    The Filipino fast food chain already has a presence in China, Vietnam, the Middle East, and Singapore, and is currently in talks to acquire a US-based firm. It also plans to intensify its market presence in Vietnam.

    Here at home, JFC plans to open “at least 200 stores, including Chowking” outlets, as the fast food business continues to be strong.

    Apart from its flagship brand Jollibee, the food chain operator’s local brands include Chowking, Greenwich, Red Ribbon, Mang Inasal and Burger King.

    Its brands overseas include Yonghe King, Hong Zhuang Yuan and San Pin Wang in China; and Jollibee, Red Ribbon, Chowking, and Jinja Bar in the United States.

    It also has operations in Brunei, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Hong Kong, Oman, and Cambodia, among others.

    Jollibee Foods is owned by billionaire Tony Tan Caktiong.

    Early in 2013, JFC completed a deal to buy half of the business of SuperFoods Group, which owns and operates Highlands Coffee shops, Hard Rock Cafe branches and Pho24 restaurants. Highlands Coffee has 84 stores in Vietnam and the Philippines, and Pho 24 has 70 stores across Vietnam, Indonesia, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Macau and Cambodia.

    It also has a stake in Sabu hot pot restaurants in China with a Taiwan joint-venture partner.

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