Tapa King COO shares 3 tips for would-be franchisors
Tapa King, the only specialized fast-casual Filipino tapa restaurant, is among the Filipino pride brands that are making waves in the local and global markets, even amid the pandemic. Chief Operations Officer Melodee Isaguirre attested that 2021 was the best year for the mass favorite tapa brand.
“2021 became our banner year… Our team persisted to launch our re-branded concept in June 2020 at the height of the pandemic. After that we received inquiries from both local and international scenes, allowing us to open 11 stores amid the pandemic, and that includes our 4th store in Dubai… This is one of the takeaways why 2021 became our banner year… We have great teamwork. I truly believe that teamwork makes the dream work,” Isaguirre shared during Francorp’s How to Franchise Your Business Seminar.
When Tapa King opened their first store, their goal was simple – to carve out a spot where busy meat lovers can enjoy a classic homestyle favorite, even while on the go. But over the years, their signature tapa has become an everyday staple, not just in the Philippines but all over the world.
Isaguirre explained how Tapa King did it. “We increased and strengthened our commitment to boost our efficiency. Our food cost improved by 4% versus last year. So, we get additional revenue streams, through franchising also, and key accounts. We made our frozen tapa available across all key players like Landers, Waltermart, and SM Stores, apart from our bottled merchandise and so on.”
“We focused on people, we focused on brand, and we focused on system enhancement, and that made 2021 the best year for Tapa King,” she added.
So when asked if this is the right time to franchise, Isaguirre said yes. “Although the pandemic may not seem an ideal time to expand through franchising, business people who are ready to do the necessary preparations have a major opportunity for success.”
3 Tips for Would-be Franchisors
1) Franchisors should assess the potential franchisee.
Isaguirre said that franchisors must ask potential franchisees with a lot of questions and one of those is “Do you believe in the brand?” because ultimately they will become brand ambassadors. “They must believe and trust in the brand,” she said. Other questions franchisors must ask include their knowledge of the brand, their support systems, and other technical aspects.
2) Franchisors should diversify revenue streams.
“Take an in-depth look at your business model if there are sustainable ways to increase current resources or pivot to new ones,” Isaguirre explained. New ways to improve profit include adopting off-premise and carry out services, partnership with aggregators, curbside pickup option, availability of key accounts, and even virtual branding.
3) Franchisors should bolster confidence in safety and brand recognition.
Isaguirre emphasized that “Franchisors must consider that trust is more important now than ever.” Franchisees and customers are looking for a brand that can uphold food safety practices and consistently do them. It is also a must to make sure that an established franchise system is in place.
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