TTFB to launch 7th brand this year

By Kuo Chia-erh  /  Staff reporter, in Taichung

Fri, May 19, 2017 - Page 12

Tai Tong Food & Beverage Group (TTFB, 瓦城泰統集團), which operates six restaurant chains including Thai Town Cuisine (瓦城泰式料理), yesterday said it is to launch its seventh brand by the end of this year.

“The new brand featuring Southeast Asian flavors is in line with TTFB’s multiple-brand strategy,” chairman Charles Hsu (徐承義) told a news conference in Taichung, adding that the company plans to launch another five new cuisine chains before 2020.

TTFB plans to increase its domestic outlets from 104 to 125 by the end of the year, including increasing the number of Thai Town Cuisine branches from 60 to 65 and Very Thai Noodles from 21 to 28, Hsu said.

The restaurant operator also plans to add two or three outlets of Rice Bar (時時香), its sixth brand, which was launched in January, he said.

Given a saturated market in the nation’s major cities, the company is eyeing second and third-tier cities to avoid stiff competition, he said.

TTFB is also planning to increase the number of outlets in China from five to 11 by the end of this year and is hoping to expand its footprint in the US market within the next three years, he said.

“There are more than 6,000 Thai-style restaurants in [the US], but the majority of them are locally owned enterprises,” Hsu said, hinting at potential opportunities in this sector.

To help maintain food quality across its multiple restaurants, the company said it has secured land for its planned global innovation and logistics center in Taoyuan’s Jhongli District (中壢).

The facility, which is expected to cost more than NT$400 million (US$13.23 million) in total investment, is to start construction by the end of the year.

TTFB’s first-quarter net profit was NT$87.6 million, edging up 1.23 percent from the same period last year, with NT$3.77 in earnings per share, company data showed.

First-quarter gross margin was 52.83 percent, up from 51.45 percent a year ago, but operating margin slipped to 10.45 percent from 10.58 percent.

Revenue last month gained 8.51 percent year-on-year to NT$326.17 million, bringing total revenue in the first four months of the year to NT$1.37 billion, up 5.69 percent from a year earlier.

TTFB shares were unchanged at NT$249 in Taipei trading yesterday, beating the benchmark TAIEX, which edged down 0.44 percent to 9,969.45 points.