KIP inks MoU with QSR to open more KFC outlets

by LYDIA NATHAN / pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

KEPONG Industrial Park Group of Cos (KIP) has entered into a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with QSR Brands (M) Holdings Bhd to establish KFC drive-thru restaurants at three locations, a deal that is expected to further boost earnings for both groups.

The new outlets — include KIP Mall Desa Coalfields in Sungai Buloh, KIP Mart Lavender in Senawang and a community-centric hybrid retail centre, KIP Mart Kota Tinggi in Johor.

KIP group CEO Valerie Ong (picture) said the group expects the strategic partnership with QSR will be an impetus for future collaborations by the two parties.

“The addition of the restaurants to the present tenant mix will increase our array of food and beverage outlets that will inevitably take both brands to the next level,” she told reporters at the signing of the MoU in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Ong added that the deal is also expected to increase occupancy rates and boost the visitor traffic to the locations for its KIP Real Estate Investment Trust (KIP REIT).

KIP Mart Lavendar is a single-storey retail centre that would begin operation in December 2018 and is expected to increase its occupancy rate by 4% to 85% with the extension of the new 4,800 sq ft KFC drive-thru.

Desa Coalfields is an extension to the 213,000 sq ft KIP Mall Desa Coalfields and the new KFC outlet is expected to boost its footfall to approximately 1,500 visitors per day once it is open to the public in the fourth quarter of 2019.

KIP REIT currently has six assets valued at RM614.9 million as at the end of September 2018, and the total amount is expected to surpass the RM1 billion mark in 2019.

Meanwhile, QSR MD Datuk Seri Mohamed Azahari Mohamed Kamil said QSR would continue to seek partnerships with varied industries as part of its continuous efforts to improve its service accessibility.

“We realised the only way to grow is forward, and today’s signing is a culmination of the partnership between two strong players in our respective industries,” he said yesterday.

He added that the brand that manages the franchises of both KFC and Pizza Hut would open more outlets in the next three years.

“Between 2018 and 2021, we aim to open a minimum of 67 new KFC outlets and an additional 50 new outlets in a joint venture with Petroliam Nasional Bhd.

“There has been a worldwide decline in numbers for Pizza Hut, but we stopped opening new stores and performed a turnaround strategy.

“I’m glad to say we ended 2017 with a double-digit growth. In the next two years, we plan to open another 60 new Pizza Hut stores,” Mohamed Azahari said.

QSR currently operates 810 KFC restaurants in Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei and Cambodia, and 380 Pizza Hut restaurants in Malaysia and 80 in Singapore.