By JAMES A. LOYOLA
Jollibee Foods Corporation assures that only a small portion of its stores in China have been closed due to the Novel Corona Virus while it remains committed to expand its business in that country.
In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, JFC said that, as of December 31, 2019, it had a total of 5,973 stores worldwide consisting of 3,316 in the Philippines, 389 in China, 1,572 in North America, and 696 in Europe, Middle East and other parts of Asia.
“China accounts for 6.5 percent of the total JFC store network and 7.4 percent of the global system-wide sales. Within China, there are 14 stores, all Yonghe King, in the province of Hubei where Wuhan City is located,” the firm said.
It noted that, “Today and in recent days, all 14 stores are temporarily closed and will remain closed as part of the government’s effort to contain the virus. The 14 closed stores represent less than 1 percent of the total JFC store network and 3.6 percent of the total store network in China.”
“While it is too early to determine the total impact of the Novel Corona Virus on its business in China, JFC remains very committed to keep building and growing a profitable business in China,” said JFC.
For 2020, JFC said it plans to open more stores in China, mostly Yonghe King, in line with its goal to become a significant player in the restaurant industry in China.
It envisions to build at least 1,000 stores in the People’s Republic of China in the next few years and that China will provide a significant contribution to the profit of Jollibee Foods Corporation.
JFC said it believes that “the Novel Corona Virus, as with other episodes of epidemic like SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome in 2003), will be contained through the measures being taken by the government of the People’s Republic of China and in cooperation with other government agencies and private institutions.”