FOOD CART OPERATOR Fruitas Holdings, Inc. (FHI) looks to expand its footprint outside Metro Manila, given the economic growth in the provinces, and at the same time, introduce new brands.
FHI said on Tuesday that it has already opened 70 stores within Visayas and Mindanao as of September, bringing its total store count to 849. Its new markets include Cebu, Davao, Dagupan, Leyte, Iloilo, and Cagayan de Oro.
Alongside the opening of more stores, it has also introduced new food brands namely Cascades Lifestyle Park, UVA, Chikenini, and LA Steak.
This is in addition to more than 20 brands already under its portfolio, such as Fruitas Fresh From Babot’s Farm, Buko Loco, Juice Avenue, Buko ni Fruitas, The Mango Farm, Johnn Lemon, and Black Pearl, among others.
“Fruitas Holdings plans to further strengthen our footprint outside Metro Manila. We have been doubling our number over the past years and would like to sustain this momentum,” FHI President and Chief Executive Officer Lester C. Yu was quoted as saying in a statement.
The company noted that it has been able to almost double its store network in the past two years, ending 2017 with more than 750 stores, around 81% higher than what it had in the previous year. It also closed 2016 with 415 stores, 60% more than its footprint in 2015.
FHI’s store expansion has been driving its financial performance in the past years. In 2017, it delivered P1.2 billion in consolidated sales, jumping 130% from what it generated in the same period a year ago.
While focusing in expansion efforts, FHI has also recently partnered with mobile payment services provider GCash for Scan-to-Pay features. The cashless payment feature is currently available 45 FHI pilot stores, but will be launched across all the company’s brands by the end of the year.
“To advance the growth of our physical stores, we also plan to grow with technology through GCash. It will be an opportunity for us to provide an easier and more efficient payment system and create a better experience for our consumers,” Mr. Yu said.
Earlier this year, Mr. Yu announced his plans to raise P2 billion through an initial public offering at the stock market to fast track the company’s expansion. — Arra B. Francia