Major growth is planned over the next couple of years, with a goal of 100 combined stores in the next 24-36 months.
Retail Systems Group spoke to QSR Media to discuss the merger of Ali Baba Lebanese Cuisine Pty Ltd and Le Wrap Franchising Pty Ltd. Kaan Celik, the director of Le Wrap, said the merger will open up more opportunities for Le Wrap, while Robert Marjan, director of Ali Baba, agrees that growth and reinvigoration are a major motivation for the merger.
QSR Media: Tell us more about the merger. How will it benefit both businesses and franchisees?
Ali Baba has been around since 1979 and has 40 locations. Le Wrap has been around since 2005 and has 23 locations. The combined businesses will have better negotiating power for new sites, rents, products from suppliers, shop fitting prices, marketing benefits and ideas. The franchisees will be able to call on experienced senior managers and retail area manager who can with the years of know how quickly assist and improve all areas of the business. The similar opportunities will see more enquiries and people wanting new and existing stores. A National marketing manager will be a true benefit to the franchisees at ground level and from a corporate branding level. Local store marketing will be given a stronger focus.
QSR Media: What changes are set to happen following the merger? (e.g., store design or menu offerings)
Too early to say in full detail . Yes of course store designers /architects will be engaged to ensure functional and appealing images and designs are created. Menus and store feel will undergo simple face lifts to be even more enticing. Each brand will remain as is. Certain lessons can be learned from both and utilized for benefits to the consumer .
QSR Media: Can you tell us more about your expansion plans for the next 5 years?
From 63 stores to 100 on the next 24-36 months. Le Wrap will have 4 new stores open before Christmas. We are looking at Queensland . Daily we are communicating with leasing and landlords on sites. In the next 3 years, we will see what other opportunities present themselves in the food industry that are aligned to our way of wellbeing messages.
QSR Media: Are there further plans to grow overseas?
Not at this stage. We have enough on our plate just in Australia.
QSR Media: Any big news for the year?
The merger is enough right now. We need to keep things under WRAP at present. Watch this space.
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