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Western-style dining chain Element Fresh prioritises Vietnam market

China-based refined casual dining chain Element Fresh is expanding internationally with Southeast Asia, including Vietnam, a priority for immediate development.

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Element Fresh franchisees can access food and beverage ingredients from local markets, eliminating the hassle and cost of logistics program.

In Vietnam, the 15-year-old chain is looking for qualified companies and franchisees to develop the network. Franchisees will attend pre-opening training and restaurant audit programs and access forums before starting the business.

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“We are focused on all of Southeast Asia, and would not exclude Vietnam from that mix. Vietnam is a growing economy with an emerging, young middle class who want products and services like those offered by Element Fresh,” said Paul Barbone, Element Fresh’s director of international franchise business.

Although locations have not yet been chosen, Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi would be preferred.

“There are advantages to both big cities. Our franchise partner would need to decide on which one first, and the rationale behind such a decision,” Barbone said.

He also expects the franchise partner would produce a development plan, in terms of store numbers and timing.  

“Our business, like any business, has economies of scale, and we would want to partner with someone that wants to realise those economies sooner rather than later,” he concluded.

Element Fresh is known for its wholesome gourmet salads, fresh made-to-order fruit juices and smoothies and American-style breakfasts.

In China, Element Fresh operates nearly 40 restaurants, and plans to add 30 more by 2020.

Element Fresh joined the International Franchise Discovery Day in Hanoi, organised by Asian franchising specialists VF Franchise Consulting.

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