People line up to buy bakery products at a Paris Baguette store in Wisma, Singapore in this file photo. / Courtesy of SPC
By Park Ji-won
Food and confectionery conglomerate SPC Group plans to expand its Paris Baguette bakery chain to Southeast Asia.
SPC announced recently it aims to make Paris Baguette the No.1 bakery franchise in the world by opening 3,000 branches and increasing worldwide sales to over 2 trillion won ($1.76 billion) by 2020. The firm plans to open 1,000 of these stores in 20 countries and raise sales to 700 billion won by 2015.
"Our ultimate goal is to become the top bakery in the world. We will expand our stores to Southeast Asian countries first, where the high growth potential will help us achieve this," an official at SPC Group said.
The group opened its first Paris Baguette bakery in Southeast Asia in Cao Thang, Vietnam, in March 2012. Today, the firm runs nine branches in Vietnam. The firm also plans to open branches in Indonesia.
In addition to Southeast Asia, the firm will open 500 Paris Baguette stores in China by 2015, specifically in the northeastern, southern and western parts of the country. SPC has 119 stores in China, after opening its branch there in Nanjing in November 2011 and a second branch in Dalian in July, 2012.
It was able to open over 1,000 stores overseas because of its successful localization strategy, in which it modifies menus to fit local market preferences. SPC said this strategy will expand Paris Baguette's market share. The firm had been focusing on Korean customers overseas but will be tailoring its menu to the broader local market.
The firm has Paris Baguette branches in the United States, China, Vietnam and Singapore.
SPC also plans to open new bakeries in Manhattan ― it opened its first branch in the U.S. in 2002 and now has 27 Paris Baguette stores in the U.S., mainly in Los Angeles and New York.
When asked why it took a long time to open its first branch in the United States, the firm answered that it had to follow different regulations in each country, and this needed time.
SPC Group has three food subsidiaries: Samlip, which mainly sells packaged bread in Korea and supplies bread to other local subsidiaries; Paris–Croissant, which owns the Paris Baguette chain; and BR Korea, which operates Baskin-Robbins and Dunkin' Donuts franchises here.