Jollibee invests $100 million to acquire Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf

Philippine fast food giant Jollibee Foods Corp. (JFC) on Wednesday, July 24, disclosed that it will be acquiring United States-based The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf (CBTL) through a $100 million investment.

The $100 million is JFC’s initial investment. Jollibee Worldwide Pte Ltd, its Singapore-based subsidiary that owns Java Ventures, LLC. in the United States, will handle the purchase. 

According to Reuters, JFC will invest another $250 million, for a total of $350 million in acquisition. 

“The acquisition of Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf will be Jollibee’s largest and most multinational so far with business presence in 27 countries,” said Jollibee Chairman Tony Tan Caktiong in a statement.

“This will add 14 percent to [Jollibee’s] global system wide sales, 26 percent  to its total store network, will bring international business’ contribution to 36 percent of worldwide sales, and will bring [Jollibee] closer to its vision to be one of the top 5 restaurant companies in the world in terms of market capitalization,” he added.

According to Tan, their priority is to accelerate the growth of The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf brand particularly in Asia through brand development, marketing and franchise support system.

As of December 2018, CBTL has 1,189 outlets spread across the United States, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. 

Largest Asian restaurant company

JFC was named the largest Asian restaurant company in 2013. And with 3,200 stores, including over 600 stores found in 13 countries overseas, its expansion still show no sign of stopping.

In 2018, it acquired Mexican chain Tortas Frontera, which serves pulled pork, chorizo and beef sandwiches with sides of guacamole and cilantro salsa; Tim Ho Wan, which is famous for its barbecue pork buns; and U.S. chain Smashburger, which serves burgers in 351 stores across U.S.

Jollibee also created joint ventures with Panda Express and Vietnamese noodle soup chain PHO24 to bring their popular menus to the Philippines.

Locally, JFC owns several well-loved brands like Greenwich, Chowking, Red Ribbon, ang Mang Inasal. It is also the official local franchise for Burger King. 

Ritchel Mendiola

Ritchel Mendiola is a staff writer and reporter for the Asian Journal. You can reach her at ritchel.mendiola@asianjournalinc.com.

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