International Franchise News for May
• Always Best Care Senior Services has expanded in Canada with a new location serving southwest Calgary. The new business is owned by local husband-and-wife team Kiersten Wudel and Kris Rudy. “After 12 years working in Acute Care, I know firsthand that our community needs more access to homecare support,” said Wudel. Always Best Care’s growth in Canada is being led by Steve Kelly, who was awarded a Canadian master franchise territory and opened Always Best Care of Oakville, Ontario, in 2020.
• FamilyMart Malaysia, a convenience store chain, announced that its FamiCafé in Menara U, Shah Alam, has obtained halal certification from Jabatan Kemajuan Islam Malaysia (JAKIM). This makes it the first convenience store café in Malaysia to receive this certification. The company aims to have the FamiCafés in 300 stores halal-certified by 2025 with the halal-certified concept serving café beverages and ready-to-eat food prepared in-store. There are currently 16 FamiCafés in Malaysia, with an overall target of 50 planned by the end of 2023.
• Jack in the Box has committed to build new units in four northern Mexican states, marking the brand’s first franchise agreement in Mexico in more than 30 years. The franchisee is Agustin Terrazas. “This was a natural fit to expand our brand into Mexico. Our goal was to find an experienced restaurant operator with infrastructure and local ties to develop our brand internationally.” said Tim Linderman, chief development officer at Jack in the Box. “It also made sense strategically to expand our brand along the border. The Terrazas family brings tremendous experience to the Jack in the Box franchise system and are the perfect franchisees to expand our brand into Mexico.”
• Mister Donut, a Japanese doughnut chain with more than 900 locations in Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, the Philippines, and Indonesia, opened its first Singapore location on May 21 at Bishan’s Junction 8 mall. Queues at the new store were reportedly more than 3 hours long. The franchise agreement is with local firm RE&S Enterprises, which operates other Japanese chains, including Ichiban Boshi, Shimbashi Soba, and Kuriya Dining. According to reports, plans are to open at least 9 locations in the next 3 years, including larger cafe concept units.
• Starbucks Coffee Korea, which experienced a slowdown in sales growth last year, is seeking new ventures to secure a fresh growth engine, according to an article in Retail News Asia. Citing “industry sources,” the article reported that the company held a board meeting in late March and revised its articles of association to include 65 additional business purposes: “Among the newly added business purposes are electric vehicle charging services, construction, property development and supply, real estate leasing and management, and the operation of golf courses and ski resorts.” Another change, according to the article: various types of franchise businesses have been introduced. As of late March, Starbucks Coffee Korea operated all of its 1,813 stores under direct management.
• Wienerschnitzel, the U.S. hot dog brand, has entered South America with a 15-unit development deal for Ecuador. Businessman and entrepreneurial partner Andres Sotomayor is spearheading the 15-unit development deal. The first Ecuador location is currently being built in the city of Guayaquil, with a planned opening this summer. The brand will open another 14 restaurants in Ecuador over the next 5 years.
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