For food franchising, going digital is the next step

Siomai King, with its newest addition Boy Bondat, innovates

The pandemic brought unprecedented economic slumps that hurt businesses big and small. Various industries threw in the towel as many fell prey to the pandemic and the country's economy hit its all-time low in two decades.

“Everyone’s affected; even our businesses are not immune to the pandemic. I do not believe in giving up that easily,” says Siomai King president and CEO Jonathan So. “I always believe in the saying that for every tragedy there lies an opportunity.”

Staying aggressively relentless in helping people was the only goal in Jonathan’s mind. He believes that it is the main ingredient to win the fight against the pandemic.

Alongside him in this fight is his long-time friend and business partner, Carlito Macadangdang, the vice president and CFO of Siomai King, and the person who integrated their franchise business with the digital online platform.

Siomai King president and CEO Jonathan So and vice president and CFO Carlito Macadangdang

“We just can’t accept the fact that we’ll just concede to the situation. We want to be different, we want to win, we fight or we fight, it’s that simple,” says Carlito. “We envisioned how we can survive, then we thought of transitioning our traditional food franchise business into an online franchise platform. So instead of people coming into our food carts to buy our goods, which they can’t presently do, we can bring the food carts directly to every Filipino home through the use of the internet.”

One of the biggest investments they made aside from upgrading their digital infrastructure was the creation of the Boy Bondat franchise restaurant, and obtaining the services of the king of talk Boy Abunda as Boy Bondat’s brand ambassador.

Boy Abunda officially signs for Boy Bondat together with Jonathan and Carlito

Jonathan also said that the move in investing on Boy Bondat was very risky, especially in these uncertain times. He said that no businessman in his right mind would do such a thing. However, they did, because they believed that Boy Bondat, as the official “all Filipino dish line-up” in the Siomai King family will surely help propel the online franchise business to new heights. 

‘We envisioned how we can survive, then we thought of transitioning our traditional food franchise business into an online franchise platform.’

Today, Boy Bondat is now one of the franchise concepts offering top-notch Filipino all-time favorite dishes. People can enjoy these dishes at home, like the brand’s regular pork sisig, chunky and beefy signature beef pares with chili sauce, spicy pork sisig, kare-kare, and lugaw.

Jonathan and Carlito’s game-changing idea has opened the door for those who want to manage a franchise business in the new normal setting. More and more franchise companies are now following what they did, transitioning to the online franchise platform, surviving and thriving in the midst of the pandemic.