17 Sep 2014

Big plans for Esquires Coffee Houses

9:09 am on 17 September 2014

Cooks Global Foods has big plans for its franchised chain Esquires Coffee Houses which is already expanding into the Middle East and Asia.

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It's now eyeing up Korea, Japan, the United States and Europe.

It follows a plan announced this week by Cooks to buy the master franchise for the brand in China for $8.3 million.

Chairman Keith Jackson said he wants to take New Zealand's coffee culture to new territories.

"Our mission really is to take the Esquires Brand, which is based on free-trade and organic coffee, using New Zealand's cafe culture, to take that to the world and really grow the brand.

"The big opportunities where we're not present at the moment is in the United States. We're certainly very keen to get into there. Korea and Japan are large cafe environments already and of course Europe. We haven't got a footprint in mainland Europe at this stage," he said.

"All of those are on the radar, it's just a matter of making sure we take one step at a time and don't overcook it."

Mr Jackson said contrary to perceptions, Europe and the US are not saturated with cafes.

"The growth in cafe areas in Europe is sort of seven to ten percent per annum and so that's continuing and has done over the last few years and within that branded coffee is growing at a faster rate than coffee in general so the market is growing rapidly. Other markets such as Turkey as an example, grew at an average of nearly 20 percent for the last three years compound so there's huge growth in the sector."

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