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Subway, US sandwich chain to open 500 stores in China within 5 yrs

Updated: 13 Mar 2010
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Subway has opened 144 stores in Chinese mainland


Subway sandwich


Subway, the US-based sandwich-shop chain, plans to open 500 stores in the Chinese mainland during the next five years as it tries for a bigger share of the fast-food market there, said co-founder Fred DeLuca.

Subway, which now has 144 stores in the mainland, will add another 50 restaurants this year, DeLuca said.

Subway's competitors, including McDonald's Corp and Yum! Brands Inc, are also adding outlets in the Chinese mainland as growing wealth in the world's third-largest economy fuels demand for their products. McDonald's this week said the Chinese Lunar New Year holiday in February helped the world's biggest restaurant company post monthly sales that beat analyst estimates.


"There are a lot of Chinese people to feed," DeLuca said. "We are right now in the beginning phase of our development in the Chinese mainland, hoping to have more expansion in the years."

In addition to adding stores, Subway may tweak its menu for Chinese consumers, DeLuca said. Yum's Kentucky Fried Chicken, or KFC, restaurants offer rice porridge and Peking duck flavored chicken wraps in the mainland.

"We are trying some localized flavors," he said.

Subway's sandwiches now cost an average of 20 yuan ($2.93) each, which is "a little bit higher" than its competitors, DeLuca said. A regular McDonald's cheeseburger costs 6 yuan in the mainland.

The restaurant chain is "working to get the price more competitive" as it increases the volume of stores in the mainland, DeLuca said.


SOURCE: China Daily


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