This morning, I woke up to a trending topic in almost all the Facebook pages for Filipino communities in Winnipeg – the hot topic was all about the Filipino multinational chain of fast food restaurant – JOLLIBEE! For those who have not heard about Jollibee, it is popular fast food brand in the Philippines and other countries such as USA and other Asian countries. Jollibee is considered as Asia’s answer to McDonald’s in the fast food burger business.
Founded in 1975 as a single ice cream parlour just outside downtown Manila in the Philippines, Jollibee is today the flagship brand of a family-run empire, spanning more than 2,800 stores and nine brands around the world. Jollibee is well-known around the world for its pineapple-topped hamburgers and “Chickenjoy” fried chicken. But my personal favorite is their “palabok fiesta” and peach-mango pie. With the success of its flagship brand, JFC acquired some of its competitors in the fast food business in the Philippines and abroad such as Chowking, Greenwich Pizza, Red Ribbon, Mang Inasal and Burger King Philippines.
In 2014 news came out that Jollibee plans to expand in Canada, according to Ysmael Baysa, CFO of the Jollibee Foods Corp., Canada was one of several countries that the company was eyeing for expansion “due to the growing number of Filipinos in these areas. Since then the over 660,000 people of Filipino descent in Canada particularly the residents of Toronto, Vancouver and Winnipeg are all wishing that the first Jollibee store in Canada would open in their city.
It can now be told that Jollibee’s is coming in Winnipeg and will be located at 1400 Ellice, north of one of the cities popular mall, Polo Park. Photos of the plan shows that the popular Filipino fast food will be located in a building between Pita Pit and Mongo’s Grill.
According to Mr. Baysa, all of Jollibee’s North American stores will going to be company-owned because the company wants to enter Canada with the Jollibee brand with the way the company want it done – the right way.
Jollibee’s impending foray in Canada elicited different reactions from Canadians, there were people (like me) who are very excited about it, but there are some who thinks that having another fast food chain is one of the last thing that Canada needs as there are nearly 25% of Canadians who are considered obese and having another fast food chain will increase the obesity rates. While other feel bad that Jollibee is not opening its store in their own city or region.
Jollibee, retrieved June 1, 2016
Winnipeg Will Be Among the First in Canada to Get Philippine-Based Jollibee Restaurant, retrieved June 1, 2016.
Philippines’ largest burger chain looks to expand into Canada, retrieved June 1, 2016.
Filipino fast food chain Jollibee is officially coming to Canada, retrieved June 1, 2016.