Central looking to expand Auntie Anne’s outlets in region

Published August 17, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation



CENTRAL RESTAURANTS Group, the local franchisee of the Auntie Anne’s pretzel chain, is negotiating with US-based Focus Brands International for the right to expand the soft-pretzel shops to emerging markets in the region, especially Vietnam.

The company is conducting a feasibility study on priority expansion markets, which also covers logistics, consumer insights and local regulations.

The recent acquisition of Big C hypermarkets in Vietnam by Central Group will allow other branded business units of the group, including Auntie Anne’s, to be expanded along with Big C’s network in that country.

Nongnapas Rumphoei , assistant vice president of Auntie Anne’s, said yesterday that the company planned to increase its shops in Thailand from 134 currently to 200 in five years.

Investment will be between Bt3 million and Bt5 million per store depending on the size, which will range from 35 to more than 40 square metres.

“We want to more than double our annual revenue from more than Bt800 million targeted for this year to about Bt2 billion in five years,” she said.

The company targets 20-per-cent growth for its Auntie Anne’s business and 149 shops in total this year.

For next year, sales are expected reach Bt1 billion and outlets to 159-169.

“Under the negotiation with our franchiser, it would like us to open Auntie Anne’s in countries without such soft-pretzel shops, such as Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos.

“It has seen our great potential to expand the business in the AEC based on our local success in Thailand,” she said.

Auntie Anne’s Thailand is the franchisee with the fastest expansion record in Asean.

“We took only 19 years to open 134 Auntie Anne’s shops in the Thai market,” she said.

Auntie Anne’s can be found in the Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia and Brunei.

Auntie Anne’s has been in the Philippines for more than 20 years, but has only 40 stores in the country.

Indonesia also has only four after the first outlet opened in 1995.

“In Vietnam, consumers know the Auntie Anne’s brand. In Laos, people come to Udon Thani and buy pretzels from our Auntie Anne’s shop.

“They become loyal customers of our brand,” he Nongnapas said.

The company sends food trucks to big fairs and events, as well as night markets.

The launch of the mobile channel fits the demand and lifestyles of today’s young consumers, who want convenience and accessibility.

“We have also refreshed the Auntie Anne’s brand in Thailand to be more modern and trendy. The refreshment is based on our consumer-insights survey, showing that Thai consumers demand continuous improvement in three strategic areas, which are product innovation, service, and store ambience.”

The bakery market was worth about Bt8 billion last year and is growing at about 9 per cent per year. Auntie Anne’s ranks third in that market, but controls almost 100 per cent of the pretzel segment.

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