Confident of an economic recovery after the ongoing vaccination program, Jollibee Foods Corporation is opening a record 28 Jollibee restaurants in its North American network this year.
In a statement, the firm said the popular fast-food chain Jollibee will add 19 stores in the U.S. and 9 in Canada. The 2021 expansion will mark Jollibee’s largest-ever addition to its North American store network in company history.
Last year was previously the brand’s most aggressive year yet, with Jollibee safely and successfully opening 16 stores across North America amid the pandemic.
Before the end of 2020, Jollibee opened 4 new stores, led by openings in San Antonio, Texas; San Diego, California; and Delano, California in the U.S. and a location on the historic Yonge Street in Toronto, Canada.
In total, these December openings bring Jollibee’s U.S. network count to 48, and 14 for Canada for a total of 62 stores in North America.
Though the pandemic has delivered challenges across the restaurant industry, Jollibee has persevered by focusing on off-premise channels apart from dine-in.
At the onset of the pandemic, the brand encouraged its customers to experience the joy of Jollibee from the comfort and safety of their own homes via call ahead pick-up, take-out, and drive-thru. By April, Jollibee announced the launch of its nationwide delivery service via DoorDash.
“We have remained nimble and optimistic which has led Jollibee to defy expectations amidst an extremely difficult year and experience double-digit sales growth across North America,” said Maribeth Dela Cruz, President of Jollibee Group North America, Philippine Brands.
She added that, “Make no mistake though, we would not be weathering these hard times without the support of our customers. They’ve showed up for us, and now we want to show up for them. We’re incredibly grateful for the continued support we’ve received from across these regions and are thrilled to deliver a small spark of joy for them and their families.”
In late December 2020, Jollibee opened its first location in San Antonio, Texas. Located at 5033 NW Loop 410, this also marks Jollibee’s first store in south-central Texas as the brand has 3 other stores across the greater-Houston-area.
Texas plays a key role in Jollibee’s U.S. expansion strategy. As the second-largest city in the state, San Antonio represents a major milestone for the brand and is a sign of Jollibee’s continued growth in the U.S.
Jollibee also opened its 21st store in California located at 8436 Mira Mesa Boulevard in San Diego. The new location marks the brand’s return to Mira Mesa and a concerted effort to build up its store network in the San Diego area which is home to a sizable Filipino community.