Filipino fast food chain Jollibee, which has recently opened its fourth outlet in Hong Kong, is looking to add 11 restaurants in the next five years, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
Dennis M. Flores, vice president for international markets – international operations, said the Filipino brand decided it was time to expand overseas, especially in an international city like Hong Kong where there is high customer acceptance.
Flores said there is room for more competition in the already highly competitive fast food landscape in Hong Kong, where big players such as McDonald’s and Kentucky Fried Chicken continue to step up their game with new services and food choices.
When asked about the notion that Jollibee is often referred to as the favorite brand of Filipino domestic helpers, Flores said he does not mind Jollibee being perceived by Hongkongers as a Filipino brand.
He said Jollibee will be welcomed by the market as long as the food quality is good.
Flores said local and Filipino customers make up half of Jollibee’s customer base in general. During the work week, three out of four customers in its Mong Kok outlet are local Hongkongers.
Jollibee moved to Hong Kong in 1996 with its first outlet in Central. The number of outlets reached five at one point, before business dwindled and forced shop closures. The chain has been reopening outlets since 2016.
Sandra Ng, a representative of a franchisee of Jollibee, said they decided to open a store in North Point after noticing that their fried chicken products are becoming increasingly popular among Hongkongers.
Also, North Point is where many Filipinos live and work, she said.
Jollibee, which was founded by Filipino Chinese Tony Tan Caktiong, is the Philippines’ largest fast food chain. It has 1,145 outlets around the world.
Tan was listed as the fifth richest person on Forbes Philippines last year with net assets of US$4.1 billion.
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