KAfe Group wins funding for Vietnam store rollout
Oct 16, 2015
KAfe Group, which describes itself as Vietnam’s “first urban fusion cafe chain” has secured US$5.5 million financing from institutional investors in London and Hong Kong.
The Series A financing, led by Cassia Investments, will be used to fund rapid expansion of KAfe Group’s network beyond Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City and other cities throughout the Vietnam. KAfe Group is eyeing an overseas public listing at a later stage for further expansion in the country.
Founded in 2013 by Chi Anh Dao, a Vietnamese home chef, cookbook author and TV cooking personality, KAfe Group is the first urban fusion cafe chain in Vietnam. Targeting young, affluent and trendy customers, it offers “a fresh, affordable and quality casual dining experience”, with culinary inspirations from Vietnam and across the globe.
KAfe Group offers a healthy and balanced, fresh and seasonal menu featuring quality ingredients served at modern, stylish outlets for “a delightful all-day dining experience”.
The group has developed and operates four brands – The KAfe, KAfe Village, KAfe Box, and The Burger Box – and is currently developing its own branded coffee and tea range (The KAfe Cup), as well as a pressed juice range (The KAfe Pressed). Dao leads a young, international management team with the skills and experience to manage the expansion.
In just two years, the group has built a chain of 12 outlets in Hanoi and four in Ho Chi Minh City. It plans to have 26 by the end of the year.
Dao said KAfe Group has undergone phenomenal growth in a very short period, which validates its unique positioning and the associated first-mover advantages gained as a result.
“Our highly-focused vision is to utilise KAfe Group’s multi-national background, multi-brand, uniquely positioned strategy with a ‘quality-first’ principle as the primary vehicle for bringing a safe and healthy local farm-to-table food revolution countrywide.
“In the future, we plan to expand our network aggressively, roll out multi-channel online and offline marketing promotions and delivery service, and expand our chef team. It is also our main goal to improve our operational efficiency. One of our key strategies to achieve that is to enhance our logistics and supply chain, building a KAfe Group ecosystem by acquiring local organic farms in Vietnam to build our own stable and quality supply chain of fresh, clean produce from farm to table,” she said.
“All these initiatives will help us carry out our mission to make KAfe Group the country’s leading cafe-restaurant chain within five years, to deliver our value in high quality food and service to more and more customers nationwide and beyond.”
“We are very impressed by the vision and energy of Chi Anh Dao, her success in introducing a new dining experience to Vietnam, the unique positioning of KAfe Group, and the quality of the management and operations team,” said Faris Ayoub, managing partner of Cassia Investments, a consumer-focused private equity firm investing in companies across Greater China and Southeast Asia.
“We see strong potential in the company and are looking forward to working closely with Chi Anh and Dennis (Nguyen, KAfe’s chairman) to help ensure the continued success of KAfe Group.”
Vietnam is one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia, with average GDP growth of 6.15 per cent from 2000 to 2015Q3. Its annual per capita income is tipped to grow at an estimated CAGR of 7.6 per cent between 2009 and 2019. Growing disposable income has resulted in a huge demand for a higher quality of living. This translates to demand for a higher quality of dining, in terms of novelty, taste and diversity of food, environment and service, and an emphasis on health.