Golden Spoon Expands to the Philippines

First of 25 stores slated to open by end of Q3 2009 in the Manila area.

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA --( Golden Spoon Franchising, the franchising arm of the largest frozen yogurt chain in Southern California, announced the signing of an agreement with Unilogix Inc. to develop the Golden Spoon franchise throughout the Philippines, opening at least 25 stores over the next five years. The first location is expected to open by the end of Q3 2009 in the Manila metropolitan area, with an additional two stores anticipated to open by the end of 2009.

"Signing the agreement to enter the Philippines market demonstrates Golden Spoon Franchising's commitment to make Golden Spoon a leading global brand," said Golden Spoon Franchising CEO Roger Clawson. "Our previously successful launch into Japan validated Golden Spoon's international expansion and has assisted in building the brand's exposure in Asia. We look forward to replicating that success throughout the Pacific Rim with multi-unit franchise developers."

Clawson said he plans to continue the health-conscious frozen yogurt brand's worldwide expansion by signing master franchise agreements in Taiwan, Thailand and Australia within six months to a year.

"Signing with Unilogix is a great win for Golden Spoon," Clawson said. A proven multi-unit developer and operator, Unilogix also developed the Starbucks brand in the Philippines, starting with a 25-store agreement in 1997 and expanding it to its current 159 Starbucks operations throughout the island nation.

Unilogix is owned and operated by Menchu Tantoco Lopez, who is part owner of Rustan's Group of Companies, which has more than 55 years of successful experience in retail operations and is one of the Philippines' largest integrated retailing groups, with supermarkets, department stores, gourmet/deli cafes and specialty retail stores among its vast holdings, including GAP, Banana Republic, Zara, Kenneth Cole, Marks and Spencer, Cartier, Salvatorre Ferragamo and many more.

"We investigate many franchising opportunities to add to the Unilogix/Rustan family, and Golden Spoon matched well with our focus on bringing in brands that will be of value to the people in the Philippines," Lopez said. "We feel Golden Spoon's focus on local communities and its commitment to providing premium products at a great price creates an opportunity that is too good to pass up."

Fulfilling Golden Spoon's commitment to adapting its "unfranchise franchise" model to the needs of local communities, outlets in the Philippines are anticipated to be a mix of traditional locations as well as non-traditional operations such as kiosks in shopping malls or grocery stores. This strategy will help create a Golden Spoon presence in multiple retail venues in and around the country's major cities, Clawson said.

"With its hot and humid tropical climate, people in the Philippines tend to seek entertainment and shopping indoors, and they tend to consume copious amounts of frozen treats," Clawson said. "Adding kiosk locations to the mix reflects the Golden Spoon brand's community-centric focus, adapting our model and flavors to fit varying cultures across the globe while maintaining a consistent, credible quality product."

When asked if any flavors would be developed to cater to the local taste palette, Clawson said mango and additional tropical fruit flavors will be added to the current lineup.

"They are big producers of mango and great consumers of it as well, so of all flavors, it will be important to have a true mango as a staple fruit flavor," he said. "However, we anticipate that our traditional Western flavors will do very well."

The Philippines represents Golden Spoon Franchising's second international market. Golden Spoon currently has seven locations in Japan, with another three to five locations slated to open by year's end.

About Golden Spoon Franchising

Golden Spoon Franchising is the business expansion arm of Golden Spoon, the popular Rancho Santa Margarita-based frozen yogurt chain. Founded in 1983, Golden Spoon has spent years earning its reputation as "the ice cream lover's frozen yogurt" with more than 50 proprietary recipes that range from Old-Fashioned Vanilla and Just Chocolate to Cake Batter, Cappuccino and Simply Tart. Golden Spoon's frozen yogurts bridge the gap between indulgent treats and healthful snacking with low calories, little or no fat, calcium, protein and probiotics (live active cultures). As a result, it is the premier brand of soft-serve frozen yogurt in Southern California, Arizona, Nevada, and Southern Utah, selling more yogurt here than any other frozen yogurt or ice cream chain. Golden Spoon has more than 100 stores open in the United States and Japan.



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