Jollibee store opens in Rome as expansion resumes


JOLLIBEE Foods Corp. (JFC) has opened its first store in Rome, Italy as it continues its expansion across Europe.

In a statement on Wednesday, the fast food chain operator said it now has a presence in Via Ottaviano, a location eight minutes away from the Vatican City.

The store marks the company’s fourth Jollibee branch in Europe, opening about a month after it opened its Liverpool branch. JFC now has four Jollibee branches in the continent, the others located in Milan, Italy and Earl’s Court, London.

“Ever since our opening in Milan, we saw that there was a huge demand for Jollibee here in Italy and our succeeding openings in the United Kingdom show the appeal of Jollibee in other parts of Europe as well,” JFC President and CEO Ernesto Tanmantiong said in the statement.

The company previously said it targets to open 50 restaurants in Europe in the next three to five years.

“We are excited to bring Jollibee’s Chickenjoy, other flavorful bestsellers, and the Jollibee experience to more people as we expand in this region,” said Mr. Tanmantiong.

“We are a step closer to making Jollibee as well-loved in other countries as it is back here,” added Dennis Flores, JFC president for Europe, Middle East, and Asia.

Jollibee currently has more than 1,400 stores worldwide and targets to open 338 more stores in strategic locations.

The whole JFC network has more than 5,900 stores across the world, under brands such as Jollibee, Chowking, Greenwich, Red Ribbon, Mang Inasal, Burger King, PHO24, Yonghe King, Hong Zhuang Yuan, Dunkin’ Donuts, Highlands Coffee, Hard Rock Cafe, Smashburger, and Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf.

The company is allocating P5.2 billion for capital expenditures this year. It posted an attributable net loss of P12.99 billion in the first half of 2020, reversing last year’s profit of P2.18 billion due to challenges related to the coronavirus pandemic.

JFC shares at the stock exchange fell 10 centavos or 0.07% to P137.70 each on Wednesday. — Denise A. Valdez

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