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EXECUTIVE INSIGHTS | Staff Reporter, Australia
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Check out Retail Food Group's aggressive expansion plan for The Coffee Guy

George Angelis, general manager of the mobile division at Retail Food Group, has discussed with QSR Media the expansion plans and growth of the mobile coffee division.

From its birth ten years ago in Auckland, New Zealand, The Coffee Guy has grown throughout Australia since the launching of the mobile coffee market on the east coast in May 2013, to now being a local store in select territories throughout the country.

QSR Media: Can you tell us more about your planned expansion?

There is a dedicated focus on aggressive expansion plans within the mobile division at Retail Food Group (RFG), with efforts targeted to grow The Coffee Guy’s footprint in Victoria and New South Wales specifically. There are a number of new territory opportunities currently available across Melbourne, Sydney and other regions throughout Australia, as more budding baristas who have a love for the coffee industry and want to work for themselves are stepping into the driver’s seat and taking to the road as franchise partners with The Coffee Guy.

QSR Media: What can you say about the mobile coffee industry? What opportunities are there?

The mobile coffee industry in Australia is very successful. As the industry is maturing in line with Australia’s evolving coffee culture and IQ, customers have much higher expectations of coffee than they did 10-15 years ago. They crave convenience, dependability and more importantly, consistent taste and quality, which lends itself to a franchising system like ours. With profitability in mind for franchise partners, the presence of mobile coffee franchises is seeing a successful growth spike through its low-cost entry opportunity. The current retail landscape in Australia shows us that business owners are facing higher property leases, proving that mobile coffee is a successful solution to static cafes through its low complexity start-up and structure, maintenance cost and ultimately, the flexibility to work your own schedule and hours, which enhances work-life balance and improves everyday lifestyle. We are also seeing more independents attempting to run a mobile coffee business. Our focus however, remains unchanged and hones in on what has made us successful from day one; offering a variety of food and beverage options, high quality espresso based beverages, consistency, reliability and exceptional customer service.

There are a number of opportunities within the mobile coffee industry in Australia, such as the growing regional locations and industrial territory expansion of NSW and other states, which all offer fantastic growth opportunities for the mobile footprint in general. Melbourne is also the second metro growth market where we are seeing similar expansion and have recently released new territories and opportunities for franchise partners. RFG’s mobile division doesn’t stop at coffee, we are always on the lookout for new opportunities – watch this space!

QSR Media: What sets your brand apart from other coffee franchises?

The Coffee Guy is Australia’s newest and most exciting mobile coffee franchise. From its humble beginnings ten years ago in Auckland, New Zealand, The Coffee Guy has grown throughout Australia since successfully launching in the mobile coffee market on the east coast in May 2013, to now being a local icon in select territories throughout the country. The growth of coffee culture in Australia is rather significant, making it such a robust industry with key players. The Coffee Guy’s biggest benefit is that its mobile platform removes the cost and complexity of running a traditional cafe which has a higher start-up and operating costs. In any new business there is fear of the unknown, however The Coffee Guy overcomes these concerns through intensive training and business development programs, significantly reducing these fears for the franchise partner.

QSR Media: What do you observe with the demands of consumers today?

With growth in the Australian coffee sector evolving to focus on convenience, mobile coffee business models have emerged as the solution to time poor but quality-seeking consumers. Fortunately, The Coffee Guy fills the unfulfilled niche as our model allows our owner-operators to move around and visit customers, delivering directly to their workplace. As mentioned earlier, the coffee industry is also maturing with the evolving palate of consumers. They are searching for consistent taste and quality, meaning that their expectations are higher than ever before.

QSR Media: How would you strengthen customer loyalty?

High standards of customer service and loyalty are at the core of our business. We are always looking for ways to improve and engage with our customers to stay ahead of the rest, and believe we do so well through our commitment to customer service and innovation. Our core point of difference is that we innovate and release seasonal beverages, as well as run promotions to reward our customer base.

QSR Media: What would you like to tell the market about the direction of your brand?

The coffee market is an ever-changing and evolving industry that relies on market trends and taste to be successful. At The Coffee Guy, we always aim to keep up with the latest market trends, coffee quality and flavour by introducing new product lines and menu innovations. The Coffee Guy offers the perfect equilibrium of work-life balance. Our franchise system provides extensive training, support and a tailored launch program, where you will learn the ins and outs of excellent customer service and how to master the art of making barista-quality coffee. Being Australia’s newest mobile coffee franchise and offering a clear point of difference with low start-up and operating costs, it’s evident that it is one of the most rewarding work-for-yourself choices out there. You will have all of the tools you need to succeed, with a handy return on investment. Give yourself the confidence to excel and put a satisfied smile on the face of your customers by delivering delicious coffees and food daily!

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