Nguyen Gia Thanh, managing director of BKV, confirmed that some Burger Kings have been shut down recently, saying that the company will close the shops with weak business potential and will replace them with shops in more advantageous positions.
Thanh, in an interview with VTC news, said Burger King Vietnam has been looking for reasonable retail premises to continue expanding the Burger King chain in Vietnam.
The new premises must satisfy requirements in terms of number of potential customers, reasonable rent and decorations suitable to global Burger King’ standards.
Burger King has shut down its third restaurant in HCM City and plans to march towards the north.
Thanh confirmed the information that BKV has opened a flagship store at Aeon Mall and some new restaurants in Hanoi, saying that this is a part of the company’s plan to conquer the Hanoi market, a potential market in BKV’s eyes where consumers have high confidence on famous brands.
In fact, since mid-2015, Burger King opened shops in advantageous positions on Hang Buom street, Hoan Kiem Lake area and at Aeon Long Bien.
Thanh’s statement could be seen as a denial to the rumor that Burger King would leave Vietnam. The rumor spread after BKV, for the fourth time, shut down a Burger King on Cao Thang street in HCM City. Prior to that, more than 100 Burger King shops in Germany and Costa Rica were also shut down.
In October 2015 alone, 29 Burger King restaurants were shut down in Costa Rica. The owner of the franchised chain in the country said Burger King Corporation US told him to do this immediately.
The closing of such a high number of Burger Kings in many markets gave more reasons to Vietnamese to believe that Burger King would leave due to the global problems of the the group.
A branding expert said that since Burger King came to Vietnam later than its rivals such as KFC, Jollibee and Lotteria, it has been difficult for the chain to find retail premises in advantageous positions to set up fast food shops.
He said the brand sometimes had to pay 20 percent higher than its rivals to scramble for retail premises.
Thanh, in an interview with VTC News, admitted that looking for retail premises with reasonable rents and long term leases was one of the difficulties Burger Kinghas been facing since it entered Vietnam.