We may get to see the royal baby enjoying some Chickenjoy or a Peach Mango Pie soon. Jollibee plans to expand operations to Europe, as its Chief Operating Officer, Ernesto Tanmantiong, stated in an interview with the BBC. Jollibee plans to solidify its foothold in North America, before going on to Europe in three years time.

Jollibee’s initial foray into international markets was relatively quiet. Targeting the usual countries that Overseas Filipino Workers could be found in, they managed to open hundreds of stores in North America and the Middle East without too much publicity. These stores have been mostly successful and may have given the company the boost in confidence it needed to open new branches in more countries.

This confidence also translated into a more aggressive campaign for expansion. They recently pushed through with the opening of their flagship store in Singapore amidst a flurry of mixed reactions from the locals. Even with all the negative publicity they got, the same store has now become the company’s most successful branch worldwide. Business has gotten so good there that they’ve also announced their plans to open up a second branch in Singapore.

Jollibee at Lucky Plaza, Singapore.
Jollibee at Lucky Plaza, Singapore.

In their efforts to win diners abroad, Jollibee has been pushing Chickenjoy as the dish believe to be at par with the world’s best. It’s the gateway product they can use to get new people to try their more Filipino products like palabok and the longganisa breakfast meal.

Jollibee's Chickenjoy.
Jollibee’s Chickenjoy.

Europe can prove to be a tricky market for Jollibee as they’re not known to be overly fond of fast food culture. Fortunately, Jollibee can definitely count on the support of the Filipinos there who long for a taste of home.  And seeing as how some of its products have been praised by food icons like Anthony Bourdain, it may not be too far fetched to imagine Europeans responding well to Jolibee’s food as well.

Anthony Bourdain in his visit to Jollibee in Koreatown
Anthony Bourdain in his visit to Jollibee in Koreatown

Are you looking forward to seeing the Bee on your next euro trip? Do you think Europeans will take a liking to Jollibee’s menu? Let us know in the comments!

Sources: [philSTAR / BBC]

Image sources: [Jollibee / Wikipedia / rrandommusings /Daniel Food Diary /Ripley News]

12 Responses

  1. British people are all praise for the FILIPINO food now..imagine us bringing up an UBE MACPUNO cake for my birthday in a Japanese Restaurant in St. Albans, England and after I blow my cake and everyone cheered on. An English man tapped my back and said could he have a piece of cake since he loved FILIPINO food and whala…my cake was nearly finished by British people who also ask for my cake. So my dear friends , our FILIPINO taste has found its way to the Briton’s Heart hehehe and mind you when you invite a BRIT to our FILIPINO party he/she will never decline since they would know how great the food are companied with great singing hehehehe…so JOLIBEE dont worry to start here in EUROPE since we believe loads of people will love this fast food chain.

  2. Their chicken joy here in California does not taste like the original chicken joy in the Philippines. It’s oilier and they probably even used a different type of oil.

  3. U guys really have to come in Europe, even if European will not recognize it, theres a lot of filipino here who really missed Jollibee,and i am one of them.
    When i was in the Philippines, theres no week that i dont visit Jollibee, especially when i was pregnant.
    Paris,Belgium and Luxembourg would be great areas, so many Filipinos…

  4. They need to come to the UK, London especially, people here mostly eat what the Americans eat which is fast food, and there are lots of Filipinos here.

  5. I think the Europeans will not like Jollibee as much as Asians do. Basically because, they like food that is cooked just for the occasion. 😀

  6. We do have to accept that not all items in the menu will be liked by westerners. In particular, Jollibee’s particular style of spaghetti, it won’t be accepted by the ones who’ve tasted the real thing.

    That said, they still did very well in the US market with the Filipino and Asian crowd. I think Jollibee has played it smart in its expansion programs. It showed staying power by capitalizing on Filipinos abroad, but at the same time adapting certain menu items to regional tastes. Their chicken joy, peach mango pies, and halo-halo are certainly favorites that can find acceptance from foreign taste buds. It’ll be a challenge of course, but I wouldn’t mind seeing this local store do well in Europe. 🙂

  7. I am not sure that the concept will work here if Jollibee is not adapting their food to our taste. As mentioned already by Camille no one I know would enjoy sweet spaghetti and they won’t survive with only filipino customers.

  8. how come the sizes of chicken parts are bigger (in their branches abroad) compared to the ones that are being served here?… dahil ba sa native yung inihahain sa atin at sa ibang bansa eh tinurukan ng steroids?

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