Max’s Steak franchise, enters Vietnam market


ANOTHER homegrown restaurant under Max’s Group Inc. (MGI) is venturing overseas in a bid to expand regionally in line with the company’s goals to significantly raise its sales and profit over time.

Steak house Sizzlin’ Steak is set to enter the Vietnam market–its first international market–via a development agreement signed by its operator MGI and L Concepts Ltd.
Under the deal, both parties will build a minimum of 10 Sizzlin’ Steak stores all over Vietnam in the next five years.

“We are thrilled in this partnership with L Concepts given their strong credentials and long history of success. We are excited to introduce our sizzling offerings to the Vietnamese market,” Robert Trota, MGI president and chief executive officer (CEO), said.

“Our overseas expansion continues to gain more ground. We envision to roll out our key brands outside the Philippines with strategic franchise operators. As new markets are established and momentum builds in the next few years, we expect the international portion of our business to be a significant contributor to system-wide sales and to our bottomline,” he added.

L Concepts–a wholly-owned subsidiary of private investment firm The Longfort Group–is a food and beverage player in Southeast Asia, focusing on the development of unique gastronomic experiences across the region.

It currently operates a collection of restaurant brands, franchises and lifestyle concepts across the premium casual and fast casual dining segments.

“We are honored to partner with MGI and look forward to bringing the Sizzlin’ Steak experience to Vietnam to bring the best possible customer experience to Vietnamese consumers,” TW Pang, CEO of The Longfort Group, said.

“We believe that Vietnam’s increasingly discerning consumers are in need of high-quality food and beverage products and services at affordable prices and that Vietnam offers tremendous growth opportunities for those aiming to capture this space,” he added.

Aside from Sizzlin’ Steak, MGI also signed a development deal recently with Middle East-based Cartoon Fashion Group to build 10 outlets of popular pizza parlor Yellow Cab Pizza in the United Arab Emirates within the next five years.

MGI Chief Financial Officer Dave Fuentebella earlier said the group is looking at expansion of international business in the long run, viewing that it will contribute significantly to its sales and profits in the next few years.

“At this point, international business is still below 10 percent of sales. As of now, it’s still minor but we expect it to be a contributor in the next couple of years,” Fuentebella added.
At present, the firm’s brand is present in various markets–Malaysia and Brunei
Darussalam for Southeast Asia and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Qatar for the Gulf estates, as well as North America.

“We’re looking to expand our brands in countries within that region. We are exploring other parts of the Gulf region and Southeast Asia,” Fuentebella said.

In the first half of the year, MGI saw a six-fold or 561-percent increase in its first half net income to P247.74 million on the back of efficiencies brought by the continued consolidation of the company.

Revenues also grew by 166 percent to P4.88 billion from a year ago.

During the six-month period, the company opened 18 stores out of the targeted 80 to 90 new stores this year, of which the large bulk or 60 more stores will be opened in the second half of the year.

As of July, MGI ended with 535 outlets.

MGI is a casual-dining firm with portfolio of restaurants, including Max’s Restaurant, Pancake House, Yellow Cab, Dencio’s, Kabisera ng Dencio’s, Teriyaki Boy, Max’s Corner Bakery, Maple, Sizzlin’ Steak and Le Coeur de France, as well as international brands Krispy Kreme and Jamba Juice.


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