Java Group has embarked on an expansion drive this year that will cement them as Kenya’s number one restaurant chain. This expansion drive will see them pump up to Sh 1 billion into their operations in the country.
Ken Kuguru, Chief Executive of the firm revealed that the firm would now open new outlets in emerging towns and in major cities in Kenya in an attempt to generate new revenue streams and increase their presence across the nation. The firm will also aim to make investments in other East Afriican nations but the primary focus will remain on Kenya.
Java remains Kenya’s biggest restaurant chain with 64 branches and is a leader in their segment and is followed by global players like Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), Subway and Art Caffe.
KFC currently has 31 branches in the East African region, 17 of which are in Kenya, 9 in Uganda and 5 in in Tanzania. America fast food chain Subway has 12 branches in the region — eight in Kenya, three in Tanzania and one in Uganda while Art Caffe is represented by 12 branches in Kenya.
Mr Kuguru told the Business Daily that 80 per cent of the firm’s expansion drive over the next five years will focus on opening more outlets within the Kenyan borders.
The five-year strategy is estimated to cost the firm up to Sh5 billion.
Java Group runs coffee outlets under Java House, owns 360 Degrees Pizza and Planet Yoghurt brand. The 64 branches under the label include 56 coffee outlets. The firm is looking to open at least two outlets of its brands every month.
“Java House will invest between Sh500 million to Sh1 billion in new branches as well as advancements in a state-of-the-art central kitchen and commissary facilities,” said Mr Kuguru.
Java Group is keen on Meru and Machakos counties, where it will open its first branches of the year. The expansion drive indicates a shift to the counties after the devolved governments were established in 2013.