The Hanoitimes - Instead of franchising foreign brands, local businesses are capable of building their own brands in Food&Beverage (F&B) sector, as well as to take the lead in developing F&B.
The Vietnamese F&B market has a newcomer in Hatoyama – a japanese brand on seafood. This brand is established by the Migroup Investment & Commerce Company of Dinh Minh after having successes with 2 brands honoring Vietnamese cuisines such as World Seafood Restaurant (The Gioi Hai San) and Double Goat Restaurant (De Re Song Duong).
The timing in which Dinh Minh decided to invest in a Japanese seafood brand is due to the growing trend of Japanese and Korean style restaurants when Vietnamese economy is developing in comprehensive cooperation with Japan and Korea, not to mention enterprises in F&B sector are in search of new business model. As such, Migroup has introduced a new model as a bridge for cuisine connection between Vietnam and Japan.
Minh decided to develop a japanese seafood brand right in Vietnam, instead of opting for a franchinsing from a well known japanese brand. “the Franchise has disadvantage of unable to response in a timely manner, or to modify in a way suitable with the taste of local customers, it also takes a lot of time for negotiation” – Minh said.
Minh even is convinced, that this model will be a big success as the competition in Japanese cuisine in Vietnam is still low. Despite being a new brand, but Hatoyama has an advantage of a 24-hour fresh fish menu (the first and only restaurant in Hanoi to transfer fish directly from Japan to Vietnam). Besides, Hatoyama also have fishries from 28 Vietnamese seas, which are available in the World Seafood Restaurant.
Especially, Hatoyama has Chef Kyo – with 8,000 days working in Japanese cuisine and has served for the former Japanese Prime Minister Hatoyama Yukio. According to Minh, capital needed for a model such as Hatoyama is 15 – 25 billion VND (700,000 – 1,000,000 USD), which is aimed to luxurious segment with price ffrom 700,000 – 1,500,000 VND per set (30 – 70 USD). There are even a sashimi set with price from 1,500,000 – 5,000,000 VND per set.
There are a growing trends of Korean or Japanese style restaurants in Vietnam, in which half of these restaurants are operated by Japanese or Korean owners. The remaining are franchised to Vietnamese business or setting their own business model. However, with what the local businesses are doing, it is feasible that in the coming time, Vietnamese companies will hold a larger market share. As such, despite Vietnamese cuisine is famous all over the world, its business model are still fairly new compared to Korean’s or Japan’s.
“Their business models or ideas have hundreds of years old. Meanwhile, the food business model in Vietnam has just boomed with everything at the starting point” – Minh said. Redsun, a local companies famous for franchising has been operating for 10 years, but have owned many famous Japanese and Korean restaurant brands, with 90% customers are Vietnamses, such as King BBQ, Seoul Garden, Sushi Kei,Tasaki, Hotpot Story, Buk & Buk, Dolpan Sam, Tasaki BBQ. These separate restaurants have been inspired from restaurants in other countries but then adopted to suit Vietnamese customers’ taste. Redsun’s objective in the next 5 years is to increase the number of restaurants from 160 to 450.