S&P off to healthy start in Yangon amid boom in the F&B industry

S&P Foodservice Distribution has witnessed a good start in Yangon, securing contracts from 50 restaurants and hotels for the supply of a range of tableware, kitchenware and other items in the first two months of operations in Myanmar’s largest city.

And the outlook is bright thanks to optimism after the country’s recent democratic election, said Miki Ow, general manager of S&P Myanmar.

“The food and beverage industry in Myanmar is booming. As the industry grows, and hotels and restaurants focus on giving their guests the best dining experience, we expect strong demand for products that improve operations, food safety and quality,” she said.

The company started operations in January and officially opened its showroom last week after an investment of US$1 million (Bt35 million). It can stock about 5,000 items, including hygienic materials for housekeeping. The list could be expanded to 40,000 thanks to Sia Huat, a partner factory in Singapore, and Premium Distribution, a local supplier.

S&P Foodservice is a joint venture of Sia Huat and Premium Distribution. Both help bring some of the world’s top brands such as Cerabon, Safico, Giesser, Atlantic Chef, Cambro, Arcoroc, Spiegelau, Shoes For Crews, Solia, Waring, Nikko, Lacor, Carlisle, Studio William and Efay to the market.

“Products that were previously difficult or impossible to find in Myanmar are now available or can be sourced easily,” Ow said.

Its customers include international hotels like Novotel, Sedona and Parkroyal; franchise brands like Harry’s Bar, Yakun and Killiney; Myanmar’s own Kandawgyi Palace Hotel and Jasmine Palace Hotel; independent restaurants such as Le Planteur, Sharky’s and Gringos & Chilangos; and home-grown restaurant chains such as the Feel Group and Iceberry.

Ow said reaching out to potential customers was a must, to hear what they actually need. A few competitors are out there and more affordable products from China are also featured, but the company’s competitive edge lies with its equal focus on quality products and competitive prices.

“Our range is very wide. If you want something at good value, mostly silk and plastic designs, we have [them]. High [end] brands may be a little bit [more expensive]. In this sense, we can service different levels of customers.

“We also cover the house, mainly for food and beverages for the needs of a kitchen. We also aim to receive schools, hospitals and end users as our customers because we also import hygienic products,” she said.

Promotional events will be occasionally held to reach out to a wider range of family consumers and end users.

“We foresee a lot of positive things such as [the results of the election]. We have [received] a lot of inquiries so far and we hope [for] very high growth potential in the years to come,” Ow said.

Sia Huat chairman and chief executive officer Tan Choon Boon is pleased S&P Foodservice’s performance, crediting the local partner, which is very strong in its field of business.

“Good partners are very helpful in the long term, as we have our strengths while they have their strengths, especially in logistics. For us to come in, we will bring as [much] merchandise as we can,” he said.

Premium Distribution Co managing director Soe Moe Thu is ready to pour more investment into the venture.

“Myanmar’s hotel and restaurant industry, compared [with] our neighbours like Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia, is still small. So it is possible to cover the entire industry in Myanmar.

“If there is a need [for additional capital injection], we will definitely invest more,” he said.


Source: Eleven Myanmar

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