Fastfood chain operator Jollibee Foods Corp. on Tuesday announced an aggressive expansion this year by opening 600 stores.
Jollibee said in a disclosure to the stock exchange that of the 600 stores, about 250 to 300 outlets would be in the Philippines and 350 in other countries, marking the first time in the company’s history when international business would generate greater organic store expansion than the Philippine business.
The company, however, said net income fell 14.4 percent in 2019 to P6.33 billion from P7.4 billion in 2018 on lower operating income.
Revenues rose 11.4 percent to P179.6 billion from P212.1 billion in 2018. Foreign business grew 59.3 percent, boosted by the acquisition of Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf in September, the opening of new stores and 2-percent growth in same-store sales.
Jollibee chief executive Ernesto Tantantiong said while 2019 was “a very tough year” for the group, the company was expected to post higher sales and profit this year.
“We are very encouraged by the continued rise in customer visits to our store, the strong growth in our store network with sustained healthy return on invested capital, the strong momentum in the delivery business, the recovery of the Red Ribbon product supply in the Philippines and the very good indicators of recovery of Smashburger business in the United States,” Tanmantiong said.
“We look forward to a much stronger sales and profit performance in 2020 and the years ahead even as we consolidate the financial performance of CBTL into our financial results,” he said.
Jenniffer B. Austria
Jollibee invested P10.1 billion in 2019, most of which were used to roll out new stores and renovate existing stores and supply chain facilities.
After opening 497 stores, it ended 2019 with a store network of 5,971 including 1,173 CBTL stores. Store network increased by 32.1 percent from the 2018 level.
Jollibee raised $600 million from issuance of US-denominated guaranteed senior perpetual capital securities with a coupon rate of 3.9 percent last month.
It said the proceeds from the fund-raising activity would be used to fully pay the $400-million loan it borrowed from five banks to finance the acquisition of CBTL.
The share price of Jollibee declined 2 percent Tuesday to P185.20.