Bistro Group brings back Hard Rock Café to Manila

In Photo: Anibal Fernandez (from left), Hard Rock vice president for Franchise Operations and Development; Jean-Paul Manuud, The Bistro Group president and chief operating officer; and Steve Yang, Hard Rock area vice president, Asia-Pacific Franchise Development and Operations

Powerhouse Bistro Group has added another stellar member to its franchise group after Hard Rock International recently tapped the group as its exclusive franchisee in the Philippines.

Steve Yang, area vice president for Asia-Pacific Franchise Development and Operations, said bringing back Hard Rock after a year of absence in the Philippines is a logical move because the country is one of the Western-driven markets in the region.

Moreover, The Hard Rock group expressed optimism in the partnership because of The Bistro Group’s sterling performance in the local market.

“The Bistro Group is a strong industry player and with its robust portfolio of brands as well as its track record for more than 20 years, we are confident that they will be a strong partner to help us take Hard Rock to the next level in the Philippines,” said Yang.

“Hard Rock has been in the market for 48 years and we are thrilled to continue to grow our business in the Philippines,” said Anibal Fernandez, Hard Rock’s vice president for Franchise Operations and Development.

“Exciting things are happening at Hard Rock Café and we want to expand our presence in high-growth markets frequented by locals and tourists. In 2017 alone, we launched cafés in Spain, Austria, South Africa, Andorra, Bolivia, India, Cambodia, Myanmar, Argentina and Nicaragua. In 2018 we are developing in Africa, Middle East, Europe, North and South America, South Asia and China, among
others,” Fernandez added.

Yang and Fernandez recently visited Manila to check the site and meet with The Bistro Group executives.

The new Hard Rock Café is scheduled to open next month at the Conrad S Maison in Pasay City.

“Putting Hard Rock inside a mall is in response to the current lifestyle trend and is one of the best locations we’ve seen in our operations,” Yang said.

Being a brand with a diverse market, Yang said Hard Rock will also cater to generations Y and Z by introducing a new generation of culinary recipe and, at the same time, maintain traditional offerings which have been supported by its clients.

As far as expansion is concerned, Yang said they plan to establish four to five branches in the future. Potential sites are Cebu and Bonifacio Global City. “We’ll take up from there,” he pointed out.

Meanwhile, Jean-Paul Manuud, president and chief operating officer of The Bistro Group, said the partnership will be beneficial to both companies. “We believe that this collaboration will spark growth for both The Bistro Group and Hard Rock Café. Having the brand in our family is indeed an achievement for us and Hard Rock is an iconic institution that is recognized widely. Its logo alone is easily the most recognizable in the world, “ he said.

The Bistro Group is a trailblazer in the local casual dining segment, developing and managing local and global restaurants for over two decades. With preparations for the new café in full swing, the 653- square-meter 223-seater Manila branch, Manuud said, will carry the trademarks of Hard Rock Cafe that made it one of the most exciting, sophisticated and energetic brands in the world.

“Music, memorabilia, merchandise, food and service—all these things make Hard Rock Café unique,” Fernandez said.

The new café also plans to launch a new menu following the opening.

“We are eager to offer guests new menus that tap into consumer demands and trends. Hard Rock Cafe at S Maison will have lighter items, shareable dishes, and big portions while maintaining the quality and fresh ingredients that our guests have come to expect from Hard Rock. In the end, our global philosophy is about taking care of our guests and taking care of our people who are most important for us,” Fernandez added.

The Bistro Group is a collection of international hospitality casual dining brands and homegrown concepts unified by a people-focused philosophy that is the backbone of their success. With the entry of Hard Rock into the family, The Bistro Group has now a total of 12 franchisees.

With venues in 74 countries, including 185 cafés, 27 hotels, and 12 casinos, Hard Rock International (HRI) is one of the most globally recognized companies. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world’s most valuable collection of music memorabilia displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning web site. HRI owns the global trademark for all Hard Rock brands. The company owns, operates and franchises cafés in iconic cities including London, New York, San Francisco, Sydney and Dubai.



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