Tag: Fiorgelato

Fiorgelato gears up for global expansion

By Jennylei Caberte (The Philippine Star) | Updated September 25, 2017 – 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Twenty-five years is a milestone for any company and popular homegrown brand Fiorgelato is celebrating it by going global, a long-term strategy for the next 25 years to come. The man behind Milkin’ Corp., Ricardo “Richie” Z. Cuna, continues to lead the company’s charge toward global expansion.

Everything that Milkin Corp. has achieved is a result of the 25-year plan that Cuna has set in motion when he left a lucrative job as a banker to put up his company more than two decades ago. He worked tirelessly, even neglecting his health, just to make Fiorgelato a byword among Filipinos.

“Milkin Corp. would not have reached this milestone if not for the effort of the many men and women who have worked with me through the years to ensure the success of the company,” Cuna said.

The first Filipino gelato chef made everything look easy but the past 25 years was not just a walk in the park for him. Filipinos were completely unaware of gelato at the time he rolled out Fiorgelato. He also had to contend with challenges such as the brownouts and the Asian financial crisis.

But he found a way to address all these problems. So successful is the company that Cuna himself has lost count of the exact number of stores bearing the Fiorgelato name that have been put up in a quarter of a century of Milkin Corp.’s existence.

His hard work and dedication had almost cost him his life when he suffered a heart attack two years ago. Despite this, he is not slowing down and remains focused in bringing Fiorgelato outside the country – through Fiorgelato International.

To cap off the 25-year plan, Milkin’ Corp. launched its gelato ice cream brand Fiorgelato International under Milkin’ International Ltd, with its office in Hong Kong during its 25th anniversary and his birthday celebration on September 14 at the Grand Ballroom of Manila Hotel.

“For the next 25 years, we will strengthen and maximize whatever we have in Fiorgelato. The next frontier for Milkin Corp. is the international market, through Fiorgelato International” Cuna stressed. “2017 is the globalization year of Fiorgelato,” Cuna said.

Milkin’ Corp. later incorporated Fior Café with Fiorgelato, which has that novel concept of an original Italian gelateria which serves both gelato and freshly brewed coffee mixes together.

An academic and athletic scholar who graduated with Bachelor of Science and Commerce in Management and Marketing from San Beda College, Mendiola, Manila, and Business Administration from the Asian Institute of Management, Cuna is also a business developer and a franchise consultant, having studied Mini Masters in Franchise Development in Southeastern University in Florida, USA.

As it embarks on its global expansion, the company has thoroughly analyzed and studied the feasibility of Fiorgelato’s globalization. Coupled with Milkin Corp.’s international experience, Cuna said the opportunities abroad were simply too good to pass up.

“We are very happy because we are able to hit our targets. Milkin’ Corp. may have encountered challenges in the past 20 years but we were not distracted from our mission and vision,” he said.

Cuna shared franchising has been instrumental in growing his business. He reaches out to other fellow franchisers and aspiring entrepreneurs through his membership in various franchising organizations so he could help others achieve the kind of success he now enjoys.

“I want other franchisers to succeed. Of course, more franchisers and new business enterprises would also mean more jobs for Filipinos,” he explained.

“The next 25 years will surely be exciting not only for Fiorgelato but for the Philippines as well because another homegrown company – the Fiorgelato International – will conquer the world,” Cuna said.

*This article is copied from The Philippine Star as published in the newspaper on September 25, 2017, page B6 and can be found online at http://www.philstar.com/business-usual/2017/09/25/1742222/fiorgelato-gears-global-expansion

Milkin’ Corp. unstoppable @ 25, enters global market

Milkin’ Corp., maker of Fiorgelato – the county’s most popular, best-tasting and purest homegrown gelato, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year by going global, a long-term strategy for the next 25 years to com after completing its first 25-year program with over a hundred outlets nationwide. Photo shows Milkin’ Corp. President and CEO Richie Z. Cuna, owner of Fiorgelato and Fior Cafe, at his company’s 25th anniversary and his celebration, on September 14, at the Grand Ballroom of the historic Manila Hotel. Cuna said he is soon bringing Fiorgelato outside the country, specially in Japan, Middle East, United States and other countries worldwide, through Fiorgelato International under Milkin’ International Ltd., with its office in Hong Kong.


This photo release is re-posted from BusinessMirror, September 20, page E4.

Fiorgelato maker mulls entering ASEAN market

By Madelaine B. Miraflor, Manila Bulletin, published September 15, 2017, 10:00 PM

Milkin’ Corporation, the company behind home-grown Italian gelato and café brands Fiorgelato and Fior Café, is set to expand outside the Philippines, a plan that will set forth as the firm celebrates its 25th year anniversary.

Richie Cuna, president and chief executive officer of Milkin’ Corp., said the company is already at its 25th year of expansion and is at the end of its 25-year program.

“Part of the 25-year program is to establish the company, have a franchising program, and start going global. 2017 is the globalization year of Fiorgelato,” Cuna said.

To cap off the 25-year plan, Cuna noted the firm’s gelato ice cream brand Fiorgelato International under Milkin’ International Ltd. will be launched overseas through franchising in the ASEAN region.

Cuna said the company has talked to “potential franchisees” all over the region, to jump start its expansion plan.

This will be the first time the international brand will be established outside the Philippines, as the company is capitalizing on the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) integration.

Cuna explained the target is to expand in markets “almost the same as the Philippines,” therefore in ASEAN, given Fiorgelato’s strong customer base in the country especially in the A, B and C market and also due to the growing middle class segment.

“If the foreign companies are capturing us by entering the Philippine market, then we should do the same and capture them as well,” Cuna said.

“We’ll stick to our [high end to middle market] niche as we enter the ASEAN market. As we go on, we’ll see if localization or any developments in the brand will be made in accordance to the markets across the region,” he added.

With the expansion plan, Milkin’ is looking to close its 25 years in 2017 with a modest presence in the ASEAN.

In the Philippine arena, Milkin’ has intensified its brands by opening or franchising 24 branches every year for both Fiorgelato and Fior Café nationwide.

Asked why the company is keen on franchising, the Milkin’ chief said it is a faster way of growing a business, citing that the method is effective in the Philippines.

“Through franchising, you can expand faster. At the same time, you’ll be able to give aspiring entrepreneurs the chance to grow their businesses. Franchising is another way of getting to a business. It’s a proven system, brand recall and there is an element of success in the industry,” he explained.

After the 25-year plan, Cuna said Fiorgelato International is determined to enter the greater Asian market, especially in Japan, Middle East and even in the United States.

Established 22 years ago, Milkin’ Philippines now has almost a hundred Fiorgelato outlets nationwide, both franchised and company-owned.

Aside from Milkin’ Corporation, Cuna owns more consumer-related and franchise-oriented companies – including the Triomix Foods Corporation – with brands Donburi Mix, Chicana, Mr. Halo-halo, Asian Mix (Gourmet Food), Bred Snack and Maynila Ice Cream, which are mostly involved in the manufacturing, processing and distribution of food products and low end to specialty ice cream and gelato brands.

This article is copied from and originally posted by Manila Bulletin at http://business.mb.com.ph/2017/09/15/fiorgelato-maker-mulls-entering-asean-market/