TAIPEI-BASED on-the-go beverage brand CoCo Fresh Tea and Juice celebrates its fourth year in the Philippine market (and its 20th globally) by laying down an extensive expansion plan which will soon see it reach beyond the Metro Manila.
“We’ve created a brand that is aspirational to a lot of people. We’re able to create a product that provides good value,” Larry Evans Tan, general manager of Coco Fresh Tea and Juice Philippines, told reporters on the sidelines of the celebration on May 10 at its SM North EDSA branch in Quezon City.
Mr. Tan added that the Philippines is the brand’s top-performing market in Southeast Asia in terms of the number branches, sales, and expansion efforts.
“We’re one of the few ‘bubble tea/milk tea brands’ that have significant fruit tea offerings. Typically most brands get most of their sales from milk teas and a big percentage of ours come from our fruit teas,” he said of its advantage over other brands.
Some of the more popular products include Passion Fruit Tea Burst, Salty Cream Strawberry Tea, and Panda Milk Tea.
CoCo currently operates 10 stores in Metro Manila, with the most recent one opening in time for Mother’s Day in Ayala Fairview Terraces in Quezon City.
By the end of 2017, Mr. Tan said they plan to have 15 stores and are getting ready to branch out to Cebu in 2018.
In 1997, the first CoCo Fresh Tea and Juice store opened in Taipei, serving tea-based beverages with a commitment of only using the freshest ingredients. It now has over 2,000 stores worldwide and is present in countries such as Canada, the United Kingdom, Vietnam, China, and the USA.
But despite being a global brand, Mr. Tan assured that they are still very open to using produce local to the market.
In the Philippines, “about 10% overall” of the ingredients they use are from local farmers and local suppliers.
“We’re planning to, hopefully, increase it because not only do we save on logistics, we’re also becoming more eco-friendly, and it’s also because we [get to] socialize with local businesses to help all of us grow together,” Mr. Tan said.
One of their core markets in the country is the growing business process outsourcing (BPO) market as the brand affords employees “premium-level [beverages]” in a non-intimidating setting.
“It’s not really expensive — if you look at our stores, it’s quite big, it’s designed at a premium level but the products offered are really not that expensive. So we’re able to provide what we call ‘affordable luxury,’” he explained. — Zsarlene B. Chua