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Fruitas continues expansion of community store network

FRUITAS Holdings, Inc. targets to open new community stores in other locations across the country as the company continues its expansion plans.

In a regulatory filing on Monday, the listed food and beverage kiosk operator said it found 20 more locations for community stores, adding that some 20 more sites are in the final stages of lease negotiations.

According to Fruitas, it is on track to achieve its target of expanding its community store network to 100 by the end of 2021, or more than trebling the 30 stores as of end-2020.

The company said it opened a Soy & Bean community store at Malhacan Road in Meycauayan, Bulacan. The new branch is Fruitas’ first community store outside Metro Manila and Metro Cebu.

Further, the company announced the opening of its second Soy & Bean community store in Makati, located at Island Plaza, Salcedo Village.

“The next wave of community stores will cover more of Metro Manila and Cebu, and also include branches in Rizal, Pampanga, Cavite, and Aklan,” the company said.

Lester C. Yu, Fruitas president and chief executive officer, said the company’s community stores had been received positively by its customers.

He added that the company’s continuous expansion makes it an attractive distribution partner and allows customers to reach the stores faster.

“Our rollout program for the year, covering at least 70 community stores and 100 kiosks, is keeping us busy, but we continue to be on the lookout for more opportunities,” Mr. Yu said.

Fruitas is offering curbside order and pickup in its community stores as part of the company’s efforts to improve customer experience amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

“This allows both time-conscious and health-conscious customers to buy their favorite Fruitas products and a curated selection of products from partners without leaving their vehicle,” the company said.

In January, Fruitas said it had allotted P240 million to P270 million for its capital expenditure budget for 2021, which will serve as funds for its expansion and future acquisition plans.

On Monday, shares in Fruitas at the stock exchange improved 4.2% or six centavos to finish at P1.49 each. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave

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