Jollibee closes Manong Pepe chain

Posted at 04/11/11 11:42 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Jollibee Foods Corp. said Monday it is closing its low-cost homestyle Filipino food chain Manong Pepe to focus on growing its larger quick service restaurants such as newly acquired Mang Inasal.

In a disclosure to the stock exchange, Jollibee said its wholly owned unit Fresh N'Famous Foods Inc. "shall discontinue operating its Manong Pepe Karinderia effective April 9, 2011."

"The move is part of JFC's plan to concentrate resources in building larger quick service restaurant businesses," Jollibee said.

Manong Pepe, which serves Filipino food at cheap prices, began operations in 2007. As of today, it has 20 stores in Metro Manila.

The divestment came months after Jollibee acquired for P3 billion 70% of chicken barbeque chain Mang Inasal, which has 345 outlets.

Mang Inasal is Jollibee's third-largest business after Jollibee itself and Chowking.

"For now, Jollibee will concentrate on building Mang Inasal. However, it will retain and maintan its 'Manong Pepe' trademark and operating processes for potential use in the long term."

"It also plans to convert existing Manong Pepe stores to its other brands where the sites are suitable," Jollibee added.

The company said Manong Pepe's closure will not have a material impact on its profits.

In December, Jollibee also exited its Delifrance business and sold its assets.