Hester Chew, executive chairman and chief executive officer of McThai
Hester Chew, executive chairman and chief executive officer of McThai

McThai sets billion-baht budget for 20-25 restaurants this year

Corporate February 02, 2017 01:00

By KWANCHAI RUNGFAPAISARN
THE NATION

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McTHAI PLANS to invest Bt1 billion to Bt1.1 billion to open 20-25 McDonald’s fast-food restaurants and upgrade information-technology infrastructure this year.



McThai sets billion-baht budget for 20-25 restaurants this year

The first McDonald’s restaurant of 2017 was opened on Tuesday at the 1st Avenue Zhulian community mall in Bang Bua Thong. Two new stores will be opened this month.

Hester Chew, executive chairman and chief executive officer of McThai, said the new outlets would be in Greater Bangkok and major cities upcountry. “Half of them will be drive-through stores,” he said yesterday.

McThai completed the migration to a new point-of-sales system in December and is installing full configurations of it in all flagship restaurants, including dual-point service and self-ordering kiosks. 

The system is expected to improve productivity, customer service, transactions processing and data analysis.

The company will also upgrade back-office applications in all restaurants nationwide and employ SAP for accounting and MS Office 365 for better IT collaboration at the Restaurant Support Centre, or head office. 

The strategy is in contrast to that of KFC Thailand, which on Tuesday said it was converting all company-owned fried-chicken restaurants into franchised units. 

KFC will focus on franchisee support through its head office in Bangkok as well as on brand innovation and reinforcing global operating standards. 

With the 100-per-cent franchise system, KFC aims to expand its restaurants from 586 as of the end of January to at least 800 in 2020.

Chew said 2016 had been a difficult year for McThai with slower sales and development growth. 

“Despite this, I am confident in the pick-up of Thailand’s economy, the company’s strong foundation as well as our people engagement,” he said. 

The company has no policy to franchise its McDonald’s here as it believes in its great teamwork and ability to expand the stores and business on its own.

“We’re committed to investing in Thailand between Bt5 billion and Bt5.5 billion over the next five years, and 20-25 McDonald’s will be opened domestically every year over the period,” he said.

The company operated 238 stores as of December.

McThai continued investing in employee engagement through people training and development because running a great restaurant by a well-trained and motivated team is essential. 

“With the strategy to become the top-of-mind company among our customers, we will continue to treat every single customer impressively and make sure that they will enjoy our great foods underpinned by great value, have great restaurant experiences and keep coming back to McDonald’s,” he said.

McDonald’s in Thailand serves more than 8 million customers per month.