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Max’s Group to continue expanding in provinces

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By Arra B. Francia, Reporter

MAX’S GROUP, Inc. (MGI) is following the expansion of mall operators in the provinces to further grow its brands, citing the potential to enter untapped markets in the regions.

“There’s a lot of competition in Metro Manila, and there’s a lot of untapped markets in Visayas and Mindanao and wala pa kami dun. That’s why the more we try to drive our business to regions so that they can feel our presence already,” MGI President and Chief Executive Officer Robert F. Trota told reporters at the sidelines of the 25th National Retailers’ Conference in Pasay City last Thursday.

“A lot of the retailers are also going there,” Mr. Trota added, referring to the SM and Ayala groups which have mapped out their expansion to the provinces.

The listed casual dining restaurant operator has scheduled to open 50 more stores before the end of the year, located mostly in Luzon and Visayas, with two in Mindanao.

Overseas, MGI will open around six to eight stores in the Middle East and the United States.

The new stores will carry different brands under MGI such as Max’s Restaurant, Pancake House, Yellow Cab Pizza, Krispy Kreme, Jamba Juice, Teriyaki Boy, and Dencio’s.

MGI has already opened 21 new stores in the first six months of 2018, bringing its total store count to 678 branches by end-June. Of this, 54 are located across several sites in North America, the Middle East, and Asia.

The company committed to spend P500 million in capital expenditures this year, less than half of which has already been used during the first semester.

“Most of it (the store openings) will happen on third and fourth quarter,” Mr. Trota said.

MGI grew its net income by 34% to P208.3 million in the second quarter of 2018, on the back of an 11% increase in systemwide sales to P4.9 billion during the period.

On a six-month basis, MGI’s net income was flat at P332 million, due to rising costs of raw materials. Systemwide sales meanwhile expanded by 12% to P9.3 billion for the January to June period.

The company has been implementing initiatives to have more efficient operations during the last semester through the consolidation of some subsidiaries. Mr. Trota said they have now completed the program.

“We’re done for the year, that’s just part of streamlining our operations, that’s where we get additional savings,” he explained.