By Zsarlene B. Chua, Reporter
MAX’S Group Inc. (MGI) launched a new multi-brand site along Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA), as the casual dining company is ramping up expansion in the country.
“We foresee massive commercial gain due to increased efficiencies and synergies [with the multi-brand site],” Ariel P. Fermin, MGI Group Chief Operating Officer, said in a statement.
EDSA Eats is located at the corner of EDSA and Main Avenue in Cubao, Quezon City. The 600-square meter (sq.m.) building can seat 281 and features six MGI brands: Max’s Restaurant, Teriyaki Boy, Pancake House, Krispy Kreme, Yellow Cab, and Jamba Juice.
At the launch on Thursday, MGI President and CEO Robert F. Trota said the building costs 40% less than if the company chose to build six standalone stores.
“What’s good about the store is it operates under one kitchen… that should give us a lot of synergies and efficiencies in terms of labor costs,” Mr. Trota told reporters.
With this setup, he estimated the company can save three to five percent in labor costs.
“This is the type of store that we really want to bring to the provinces, it [can] become destination,” Mr. Trota said, adding that they can partner with developers along national highways and gas stations to create a mini-travel plaza.
MGI is planning to put up two to three multi-brand stores by 2020. It is eyeing one along Marcos Highway.
This isn’t the first time the company experimented with the concept as it launched Burgos Eats in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig in 2015. However, Mr. Trota said EDSA Eats has the most efficient set-up as the brands have a shared kitchen.
The concept is also open for franchising, he said.
As of September, 43% of the 750 stores under the MGI portfolio are franchise-owned. The company targets a 60-40 mix of franchise-owned and company-owned stores by 2021.
Aside from efficiency, EDSA Eats is also the prototype of the company’s sustainability efforts: solar paneling (which is said to be capable of powering 20 households a year, according to the release), a sewage treatment system, and a rainwater harvesting system.
“All the efforts for sustainability will not only be for the multi-brands, it’s for all stores,” Mr. Trota said.
Next year, MGI earmarked P1.1 billion in capital expenditures (capex), funded mostly by loans from the Development Bank of the Philippines. The capex will be spent on building their almost 20,000-sq.m. commissary in Carmona, Cavite and continued expansion of stores.