Tag: Fruitas

Fruitas Holdings ramping up store expansion

By Leslie Gatpolintan
Published online by the Philippine News Agency, September 24, 2019

MANILA — Food and beverage kiosk operator Fruitas Holdings Inc., which is preparing for an initial public offering (IPO), is expanding its footprint as it plans to have up to 750 new stores in the next three years, amid strong consumer spending and vibrant economy.

Fruitas Holdings chief financial adviser Calvin Chua said the company will use PHP586 million out of about PHP1-billion net proceeds from the IPO for its store network expansion and improvement of existing stores.

Chua said they aimed to increase the number of stores across the country by 150 to 250 annually until 2022.

“In terms of prospects, all the factors are still there –growing middle class, rapid urbanization. Last year, our combined VisMin (Visayas, Mindanao) sales was 150 percent higher than 2017. This year, we think it will be broad-based, it could be more spread across the whole country… The economy is really vibrant, so we think growth prospects are very good for us,” he told reporters Tuesday.

As of June 2019, Fruitas had 949 stores, 774 of which were owned and 175 were franchised. The company targets to hit its 1,000th store mark by the end of 2019.

It ended first half 2019 with PHP942 million in revenues, up 30 percent over the first half of 2018.

“Apart from that, the other avenues of growth would be, we also allocated 15 percent of our net proceeds, about PHP150 million, for potential acquisitions and the introduction of new concepts. We also intend to diversify (our) distribution channels,” he added.

Chua particularly cited the lechon delivery through contacting mobile or landline numbers, and the revival of its coffee kiosks. Fruitas acquired Sabroso Lechon in 2018.

He said the company is also banking on their partnerships with Grabfood and on delivery of fresh coconut water boosting its sales.

“In terms of the acquisitions and the introduction of new concepts, we are casting a wide net. In terms of targets, we are looking at food service in general. We are not limiting ourselves to food and beverage kiosks,” he added.

Chua said they are also looking to establish two more food parks at a cost of PHP50 million, targeting Metro Manila or Luzon, up to 2021.

Fruitas operates food parks in Quezon City–Uno Cinquenta in Maginhawa Street and Le Village, The Lifestyle Park in E. Rodriguez Sr. Avenue.

“A number, at least a couple of our brands have grown through our food parks. Initially placed in our food parks, then we open in Metro Manila, then we open provincially. That’s a sort of roadmap for some of our new brands,” Chua noted.

Fruitas has now over 20 brands in its portfolio such as Fruitas, Juice Avenue, Buko Loco, and de Original Jamaican Pattie and Juice Bar.

Chua said the remaining PHP50 million it targets to raise from an IPO will be earmarked for commissary expansion while the PHP150 million for debt repayment.

Fruitas Holdings planned to offer up to 602 million common shares at a maximum price of PHP1.99 each to raise as much as PHP1.2 billion from an IPO targeted this November. (PNA)


This article is originally published by the Philippine News Agency which can be accessed online at https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1081350

Fruitas branches out with launch of new brands, provincial expansion

RIDING on the economic dynamism of key cities and provinces outside the capital, Fruitas Holdings Inc. (FHI) expanded its network in the Visayas and Mindanao with 70 new stores, bringing its total store count to 849.

In keeping with its goal to serve the fast-growing food cart industry, FHI opened more than 70 new stores this year. Its growth was driven by its entry into new markets outside Metro Manila, including locations in Cebu, Davao, Dagupan, Leyte, Iloilo and Cagayan de Oro, as well as the opening of new food brands.

Further driving its expansion was the launch of food brands serving various market segments, which include Cascades Lifestyle Park, UVA, Chikenini and LA Steak.

“Fruitas Holdings plans to further strengthen our footprint outside Metro Manila. We have been doubling our number over the past years and would like to sustain this momentum,” said Lester Yu, Fruitas Holdings Inc. president and CEO.

In 2017 FHI reported P1.2 billion in consolidated sales, a 130-percent increase from its half-a-billion sales in 2016, which was driven by aggressive expansion and opening of stores for the year. The company has been almost doubling their stores for the past two years. In 2016 FHI capped the year with 415 stores, a 60-percent increase from 2015. Last year FHI ended with over 750.

Alongside its expansion, Fruitas Holdings also partnered with GCash to integrate the Scan-to-Pay feature into their payment system, which allows their customers to do cashless transactions in 45 of its pilot stores. The company is targeting to launch the mobile payment system in all FHI brands nationwide by end-2018.

“To advance the growth of our physical stores, we also plan to grow with technology through GCash. It will be an opportunity for us to provide an easier and more efficient payment system and create a better experience for our consumers,” Yu said.

Fruitas Holdings Inc. currently has over 20 brands under its portfolio namely Fruitas Fresh From Babot’s Farm, Buko Loco, Juice Avenue, Buko Ni Fruitas, Fruitas Ice Candy, De Original Jamaican Pattie Shop and Juice Bar, The Mango Farm, Johnn Lemon, Black Pearl, Cindy’s Candy Cloud, Tearex, Shou La-Mien Hand-Pulled Noodles, Friends Fries, 7,107 Halo-Halo Islands, The Pub, Munifico Pizzeria, Fancie, Fruitas House of Desserts, Uno Cinquenta The Lifestyle Park, Le Village The Lifestyle Park, and Cascades The Lifestyle Park.

FHI is the leading group in the food cart industry in the Philippines. Since its first stall opened in 2002, the group now has over 800 stores all over the country and over 20 brands in its portfolio.

*this article was copied and originally published in BusinessMirror, last September 14, 2018 and can also be found at https://businessmirror.com.ph/fruitas-branches-out-with-launch-of-new-brands-provincial-expansion/

The fruits of his labor

by BusinessWorld, September 26, 2017

Lester Yu
Founder and CEO
Fruitas Group of Companies

The food industry thrives in a fast-paced environment where survival can be fierce.

Players need to continuously think of new ideas and concepts.

Lester Yu, 42, founder and chief executive officer (CEO) of the Fruitas Group of Companies, has taken this to heart.

In just 15 years, he has introduced 18 brands to Filipino consumers.

With a Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree from De La Salle University and University of the Philippines, respectively, Mr. Yu started his career in banking.

He later tried several businesses such as jewelry, gold trading and cellphone load cards.

He eventually ventured into food and beverages. Drinking fresh orange juice every morning, Mr. Yu thought of a potential market for affordable fresh fruit juices. At the time, fresh fruit drinks were costly and usually available only in hotels and high-end restaurants. This prompted Mr. Yu to retail affordable fresh fruit shakes.

Knowing that his beverage competitors were mostly concentrated in high-end locations like the Makati and Ortigas business districts, Mr. Yu opened his first food cart kiosk in the city of Manila, which proved to be a strategic location with good foot traffic.

He used his savings to start the business. Unable to afford staff, he had to run the business alone – from driving the trucks to delivering fruits, managing the outlet and working as a store service crew.

His business picked up because Filipinos were beginning to get into fitness and healthy living, particularly the growing popularity of running.

Mr. Yu established the company in 2002. His vision is for the company to become a conglomerate. He has explored other food and beverage products because he knows that fruit shakes alone will not be enough for the business to expand.

Mr. Yu prefers his business to be homegrown. Instead of anchoring its growth on franchising, he branched out to various food categories and continues setting up of commissaries, building up the portfolio of brands being offered by the Fruitas Group.

Today, the Fruitas Group has over 850 stores nationwide, 80% of which are company-owned. From its humble beginnings as a one-man kiosk, the Fruitas Group now has 2,000 employees who retail 18 brands under three categories, namely: the leaders (including Fruitas, Buko ni Fruitas, Juice Avenue, Buko Loco, Jamaican Pattie and Johnn Lemon), the followers (like Black Pearl, Friends Fries and Fancie Frozen Yogurt) and the niche (La Petite Parisienne).

Mr. Yu gave his take on the company’s growth: “We want to grow big to have power – the power to help people, the power to help our country.”

This desire to help can be gleamed from the company’s hiring practice — personnel include senior citizens and the hearing-impaired.

The company also works exclusively with local traders and suppliers for their ingredients, in support of local farmers.

As part of his company’s participation in the community, Mr. Yu has put up CCTVs all over his barangay in Quezon City, where he continuously conducts feeding programs. He is also an advocate of education, offering scholarships under the “Touched by Fruitas” program.

When the firm was growing, it initially encountered some people-related challenges. He realized how important it was to hire good staff, manage them effectively and inspire them to develop their potential.

For the company to realize its vision to be a conglomerate, Mr. Yu has invested in a research and development team to focus on innovations such as developing variants of one product.

By balancing flexibility, entrepreneurship and fiscal discipline, Mr. Yu is confident that the Fruitas Group of Companies will continue to forge ahead against competitors. Furthermore, Mr. Yu believes that one thing that helps the company innovate is the fact it has its own commissaries.

In 2015, Mr. Yu incorporated The Lush Co. as the primary holder of Buko Ni Fruitas, Inc.; Fruitas Group, Inc. and Negril Trading, among others. Mr. Yu shared that an initial public offering is being planned for early 2018. He will also be exploring international franchising. To cater to all age groups, he will also be opening a food park targeting millennials.

Mr. Yu reminds aspiring entrepreneurs that entering a business should be a primary focus, not an alternative. Moreover, success does not happen overnight – it entails sacrifice, hard work and discipline, which are fundamental values that he acquired from his parents.

The official airline of the Entrepreneur of the Year Philippines 2017 is Philippine Airlines. Media sponsors are BusinessWorld and the ABS-CBN News Channel. Banquet Sponsors are Bench; Bounty Fresh Food, Inc.; CDO Foodsphere; Fiori Di Marghi; Global Ferronickel Holdings, Inc.; Hyundai Asia Resources, Inc.; Intermed Marketing Phils., Inc.; Jollibee Foods Corp.; LBC; SteelAsia and Universal Harvester, Inc.

The winners of the Entrepreneur Of The Year Philippines 2017 will be named in an Oct. 18 awards banquet at the Makati Shangri-La hotel. The Entrepreneur Of The Year program is produced globally by Ernst & Young.


*This article is copied from BusinessWorld as published in the newspaper, page S1/1 and page S1/3. This article is also available online at http://bworldonline.com/the-fruits-of-his-labor/

Fruitas gets Asean recognition

posted September 23, 2017 at 10:40 pm by Manila Standard Business

Several Philippine brands continue to demonstrate exceptional success anchored on their contribution to the economic and socio-cultural development of the region—which is what the Asean Business Awards aims to do.

The Asean Business Awards serves as a platform for brands and businesses that display potential of becoming global economic players in their different industries, and included among the esteemed list of finalists for this prestigious recognition is Fruitas Group Inc.

Fruitas Group Inc. was recognized for two categories—SME Employment Excellence and SME Innovation Excellence. As a national finalist for the employment category, the company was recognized for creating a stimulating and supportive workplace, also getting nods for its inclusive employment with deaf and mute persons being hired as well to be front-liners.

As the Asean regional finalist for the innovation category, the leading group in the food cart industry in the country was acknowledged for its constant introduction of new brands and products that have grown to be loved by Filipinos.

“The company is proud to be recognized, especially on the 50th year of the Asean, and the 10th of the Asean Business Awards. This is both an inspiration and a challenge for us to sustain the momentum of innovating and introducing new products and brands, and being a people-centric organization,” says Lester Yu, founder and chief executive of Fruitas Group Inc.

From a single food stall in 2002, Fruitas Group Inc. is now recognized for introducing original food and beverage concepts catering to the demands of the Filipinos, and innovative brands that have become staples in commercial institutions and establishments across the country.

“The Asean Business Awards honors influential companies and brands that are transforming the way industries are doing business by being an example. We are honored to have been given the opportunity to showcase our accomplishments and how these have impacted our growth in this category,” says Yu.

*This article is copied/re-posted from Manila Standard as published in the newspaper on September 24, page B1 and can be found online at http://manilastandard.net/business/biz-plus/247667/fruitas-gets-asean-recognition.html