Friday 24 June 2022

FAR EAST – Juan Valdez Café opens its first coffee shop in South Korea

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SEOUL, South Korea – Juan Valdez Café, the coffee shop chain owned by Colombian coffee growers, continues entering new markets in the Asian continent.

After its arrival in the Middle East in November, with the opening of its first coffee shop in Kuwait, the chain arrived today in the Far East by opening its first store in South Korea, one of the most dynamic and highest-growth economies in the world.

Located in Seoul, the South Korean capital, in the avant-garde Dongdaemun Design Plaza mall (DDP, which is expected to be one of the latest fashion icons and landmarks in Seoul), the coffee shop opened its doors with the presence of the iconic Juan Valdez, who represents the Colombian coffee growers, and representatives of local media.

The flagship chain of Colombian coffee growers arrives in South Korea – whose economy has shown one of the most important growths in the world in the last 30 years – in partnership with CCKC Co. LTD, which will be in charge of its expansion.

Beginning by Seoul, the chain is planned to expand to the most important cities of South Korea, with a business plan of four coffee shops this year and 150 stores across the country in the next five years.

“We are very optimistic about our presence in this new region. Asia is one of the key markets for the future of Colombian coffee and for the Juan Valdez brand,” said Hernán Méndez, CEO of Procafecol, the company that runs the brand and chain of Colombian coffee growers.

“We have intensively been preparing ourselves to take this step; we have brought Colombian experts to train the local staff and we have local partners that will be a key part of our success. I am sure Juan Valdez will rapidly be loved by the South Korean consumers,” he added.

The portfolio of products to be offered by the store includes roasted and packed coffee, hot and cold drinks brewed from Colombian premium coffees, a great variety of local pastries and products for coffee brewing and consumption.

For the opening of this first coffee shop, two Colombian experts at brewing and hospitality from the Juan Valdez Café team traveled to South Korea.

South Korea, a country of sophisticated consumers, is an important coffee importer, with great appreciation of premium products such as high-quality coffees offered by Juan Valdez Café.

With the opening of the fist store in Seoul, the chain has 266 coffee shops worldwide, of which 187 are in Colombia and 79 distributed in 11 other countries: Aruba, Chile, Ecuador, El Salvador, Kuwait, Mexico, Peru, Panama, South Korea, Spain and the USA.

There will be 330 stores operating worldwide by year-end, with openings planned in Latin America as well as others regions and countries.

Thanks to its expansion strategy (along with consolidation of its commercial strategy in Colombia and other markets in Latin America), Procafecol’s earnings have continued growing rapidly.

In 2013 its net income grew 229% compared to 2012, surpassing the 134% increase registered between 2011 and 2012.

Juan Valdez Café stores and packaged products are designed to benefit Colombian coffee growers. Procafecol was designed as an inclusive business model where farmers themselves actually benefit from the sale of every cup of Colombian coffee.

The Colombian Coffee Growers Federation (FNC) is Procafecol’s largest shareholder, and in addition more than 18,000 individual coffee growers have invested in the company’s shares.

In all, there are more than 500,000 coffee growing families represented by the FNC, and the vast majority own small coffee plantations no bigger than 1.6 hectares on average.

“The Juan Valdez Café brand means quality and social responsibility. It is a different brand, with a sophisticated proposition of Colombian coffee in the Far East,” Méndez noted.

Since its creation in 2002, Procafecol has delivered to the Colombian Coffee Fund (FoNC) more than 20 million dollars as royalties derived from use of the Juan Valdez brand, which are recorded as expenditure in its financial statements and used  to finance public goods and services for all Colombian coffee growers.

It is the only brand in the world for which farmers receive royalties that are allocated to implementation of sustainability projects.

Source: FNC Press Office

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