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Fulum seeking to build restaurant portfolio

Listed restaurant operator Fulum Group plans to open seven new restaurants in Hong Kong this year – and a Fulum Palace in Fujian province on the Mainland.
And Yeung Wai, chairman and CEO of the Group says the company wants to expand its brand portfolio.
“Fulum is a diversified local food and beverage brand and currently owns 14 brands and 71 restaurants. Looking forward, we will continue to explore new specialty dishes to enrich the content of our restaurants portfolio. We are also actively seeking merger and acquisition opportunities in order to expand our market share and location coverage.”
Yeung said the group will continue to assess the local and domestic dining habits and trends and identify suitable targets including restaurants and catering related businesses for mergers and acquisitions in order to strengthen the business of the group, to make Fulum Group “a diversified catering kingdom”.
The group is also proactively identifying suitable overseas partners and considering the introduction of well-known foreign restaurant brands by way of franchise operation.
His comments coincided with the release of the company’s interim results, which saw a 12.9 per cent increase in revenue, an increase in gross profit margin to 70.5 per cent, but a 31.6 per cent decline in profit attributable to shareholders to HK$27.4 million. It blamed the profit decline on increased labour and rent costs.
During the six months to September 30, Fulum opened eight new restaurants. Its brands include MeokBang Korean BBQ & Bar specialising in Korean barbecue, Mount Hallasan BBQ specialising in Korea Jeju cuisine, Winter Yutango Restaurant specialising in grilled fish, and Royal One which operates wedding banquets.
The company is also trialing a customer loyalty program in its Sportful Garden restaurants, which has already attracted 10,000 members prior to rollout with other brands.
Yeung said the group remained confident in the catering sector despite Hong Kong’s challenging economic times.
With retail rents on the decline Fulum sees an opportunity to open more restaurants in prime sites and achieve higher returns.

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