Vietnam’s Fast-Food Industry Continues to Attract Foreign Investment

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Nov. 12 – Despite the global crisis, Vietnam remains a profitable investment for Western fast-food chains.

Many Vietnamese are still willing to spend more on fast food restaurants even if it is around 2 to 4 times more expensive than the regular rice or noodle shop.

Western fast food chains tend to introduce menu items that cater to local tastes to increase sales.

According to market research company AC Nielsen, only 8 percent of Vietnamese eat at a foreign fast food restaurant one to three times a month. The company says that because of Vietnam’s population, comprising of 65 percent under the age of 25, it still remains a profitable destination for Western food chains.

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Last month, Kentucky Fried Chicken, opened an additional three stores the country bringing its total number of Vietnam locations to 55.

The Philippines’ largest fast-food chain, Jollibee Foods Corporation, also announced its expansion plans in the country by adding another four stores in Ho Chi Minh city and the surrounding areas.

Marketing head for Jollibee Vietnam,Jonx Jongko, told Thanh Nien News that the Vietnamese have been gradually embracing Western fast food athough “it’s still something new for them.”

Ly Quy Trung, the Australian-educated founder of the local noodle soup fast food chain Pho 24 told Thanh Nien News, that in more developed markets, customers have a higher awareness of nutrition content.

The United State’s top burger brands like Burger King, Popeye’s and McDonald’s are expected to tap into the Vietnamese market in the next two to three years.