Multi-format brand Coffee Planet has grand plans for expansion across the Middle East - but is determined to retain its core individuality, according to business development director Robert Jones.
“We have a development programme over the next three to five years of 75 units – that includes cafes, kiosks and carts,” Jones explained. “Now we’re chasing more sites and retail locations.
“But we are dedicated to retaining our original brand appeal as we expand,” he added.
“The Coffee Planet theme is very much about the design, the music, the layout – it’s a complete ethos. So although we are quite flexible, being the brand owners, there are those core elements that we need to maintain and that is the 'iPod generation' feel: young, funky, with a get-up-and-go attitude.
“We’ve worked very hard on our training manual for staff in the franchised stores, and we’re going to be heavily involved in the recruitment and training, because obviously that is key to maintaining our brand standards,” he said.
Jones added that it was this unique brand ethos that would make the company stand out in the regional market.
“We are very different to anyone else,” he asserted. “We’re daring to be different, not just another green-clad coffee brand in different colours re-hashing the same model, as so many chains are.”
Now the firm is looking to consolidate its presence in the region via a rapid expansion plan.
“We’ve sold a franchise for the UAE and Oman to two separate companies so it’s now a question of introducing it to the general public and to the wider industry, which we’re doing at Gulfood,” Jones explained.
“We currently have one cart in operation in the API World Tower, which is our first new retail location. Plus we signed six agreements last week with various companies and plan to sign several more over the next few months.
“I’m also currently in discussions with various shopping malls such as Dubai Mall, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, TDIC in Abu Dhabi, and others,” he revealed.