Fast food giant Jollibee Foods Corp. (JFC) said it has temporarily closed 72 stores in Metro Manila and nearby cities due to the limited supply of food products across its stores, caused by a slowdown in its internal systems for order taking, product loading and dispatch for transportation.
In a statement, JFC vice president and chief finance officer Ysmael Baysa said the systems upgrade of the Jollibee chain on August 1 caused the slowdown in ordering, which resulted in limited supply across its stores.
Since last week, customers of the fast food chain have been complaining about the lack of menu items at its various outlets, venting their frustration in various social media outlets.
Baysa said the company invested P500 million in the internal systems upgrade for 2014 “to prepare JFC for an accelerated business growth in the Philippines and abroad” and ensure its top spot in the worldwide fast food arena.
But the systems modification slowed operations and forced the temporary closure of 72 stores of various JFC brands, representing 3.2 percent of its store network nationwide of 2,244, and the reduction in the menu of many stores, Baysa said.
“In our estimate, the JFC group has not been able to serve the consumer to the extent of 6 percent of its normal nationwide sales in the first 7 days of August 2014,” Baysa said.
JFC clarified that the company has sufficient raw materials, finished products and production capacity to meet demand and that these are stored in various commissaries and warehouses.
The sole reason for the limited supply issue was the company-wide systems upgrade, it said.
But it added that it was “doing its best” to restore product supply to normal, to reopen closed stores and bring back excellent service to customers “in the next few days.”
“JFC and its business partners look forward to the restoration of sales growth to higher levels for the remaining weeks of August and the continued strong growth of the Jollibee Group’s business for the entire year of 2014 and in the years ahead, both in the Philippines and abroad,” Baysa said.
JFC reported 20.5 percent growth in first-quarter net profit to P1.08 billion compared to P895 million in the previous year.