Jollibee Foods Corporation (JFC) is eyeing its first branch in Canada as part of its goal to put up 220 in the Philippines and 110 abroad, or a total of 330 new branches this year.
According to Jollibee chief finance officer Ysmael Baysa at the sidelines of Euromoney Investment Forum on Tuesday, March 24, the company is looking at Toronto as the site for its first store in Ontario, Canada.
Jose Minana, group president for Jollibee Foods Corporation, also said its Toronto debut is long overdue adding that the company should have entered Canada way before.
Canada counts a large Filipino community according to the 2011 National Household Survey. There are more than 660,000 Filipinos in the country, with almost 250,000 located in the GTA, making Toronto home to the country’s largest Filipino population, followed by Vancouver and Winnipeg.
Food experts also welcome the entry of Jollibee in Canada. Garth Whyte, president of the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association, says Filipino food is one of the up-and-coming cuisines in Canada. Kelly Weikel, a food-trend expert for Chicago consulting firm Technomic, Inc., agrees now is the right time for Jollibee to come to Canada.
The Filipino fast-food giant operates the largest food network in the Philippines, with 2,301 stores as of end-2014. The company also owns Chowking, Greenwich, Red Ribbon, Mang Inasal, and Burger King.