In Focus
FOOD SERVICES | Staff Reporter, Australia

Suki is breaking the mold of traditional poké market with further product innovation

The brand has big plans to continue to stay ahead in the market with product innovation, refinement of eco-responsible packaging, and developing a program of communities that support its SUKI stores. Suki's CEO Kim Toovey says they also look forward to create opportunities for internal talent to rise, as well as attracting external talent to continue to refine the brand to take it international. Below is the transcript of the interview with Toovey.

QSR Media: What's new at Suki?

Plenty! New locations, new packaging, and plenty of new menu development are in the works for. SUKI is known for its vibrant colours in both its concept design and the amazing bowls and rolls that make their way to our customers. We are proud of the large product range that we stock with only a commitment to the best quality in sourcing our ingredients. Robina will see the roll out of a couple of new product ranges both developed internally as well as supplier driven releases that we see as been a real hit with the Gold Coast foodie scene.

QSR Media: What opportunities do you see in Robina Town Centre?

We are very excited to be landing our first Gold Coast location at the premium shopping and dining centre of Robina Town Centre. It has long been a destination for fun and exciting brands of both fashion and food and we are very keen to get the doors open in late November to start off the SUKI expansion outside of Brisbane. Robina offers so many opportunities for food retailers with not only a world class shopping centre but also the fact that there are so many major attractions to the area with Bond University, Varsity Lakes, the hospital in close proximity.

QSR Media: Where do you see brand in 5 years' time in terms of store counts?

We have a strategic growth plan of 10-15 locations per year nationally with a mixture of franchise and corporate locations. We are taking care in our growth plans to ensure that we are setting both operating models up for success with careful location planning and franchisee identification. Our brand values are very important to what we do on a daily in our SUKI stores, which makes the franchising process for SUKI one that we are taking care to get the right franchisees who live and breathe our values. SUKI values are the 4 B's; Be Real, Be Unique, Be Honest and Be Awesome. Our staff walk, talk and breath these values every day which makes SUKI a great culture to be a part of.

QSR Media: What are some of the plans the brand has in the pipeline?

Being such an exciting brand and one that is breaking the mold of what is traditional poké - we have big plans to continue to stay ahead in the market with product innovation, further refinement of eco-responsible packaging, as well as developing a program of working in to support the communities that support our SUKI stores. As we grow we have a clear vision of our people growing with us. We look forward to creating opportunities for internal talent to rise as well as attracting external talent to continue to refine the brand to take it international.

QSR Media: What challenges do you see in the industry?

There are many challenges that face the industry in general and we don't believe that anyone is spared from it. The big shift that the industry is making and has been over the last 12 months is the consumer reliance on delivery platforms like UberEats and Deliveroo. Consumers are time poor, and now with delivery partners not every interaction a customer will have with your brand will be a physical one. Where you would once be able to dazzle and wow with an amazing all round experience, brands will now need to find a way to connect with their customer whilst they are sitting in their office or lounge room.

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