Gong cha signs 30-unit Puerto Rico deal 

Gong cha, a bubble tea brand with nearly 2,200 locations in 24 countries, has signed a deal with SID Tea LLC, one of the largest Subway operators in the world, to develop 30 units in Puerto Rico. 

Led by a group of QSR franchisors, including Jose Vazquez, the former VP of the Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce, and former president of the Puerto Rico Restaurant Association, the deal comes on the heels of the brand’s entry into Puerto Rico earlier this year in San Juan and Manatí. The team is on track to open two stores this summer and a fifth by the end of 2024. 

Founded in Taiwan in 2006, Gong cha entered the Americas using a master franchise model but recently introduced opportunities for direct franchising. SID Tea, which also owns Wingstop and Acai Express locations, was its first direct franchisor. SID’s strategy is to open multiple brands within its portfolio in the same location to maximize traffic, according to Mario Gaztambide, director of operations of SID Tea LLC. 

“We specifically chose to partner with Gong cha based on its premium quality products, the strength of the brand, and the ease of its operating model,” Gaztambide said in a company press release. “The resounding success and warm reception the brand has experienced in the Puerto Rico market within such a short timeframe has truly exceeded our expectations. Gong cha quickly validated its ease of operations, and seamlessly complements our existing brands. Based on these results, we’re delighted to make a larger commitment to grow Gong cha across the island.” 

Ramón Gaztambide, director of new brand development of SID Tea LLC, said the company will invest over 1 million dollars by opening its first five locations. He expects to hire between 12 and 15 employees per site, creating around 75 jobs this year between store workers, construction projections and supply chain managers. 

“With seasoned franchise partners like SID Tea LLC, I can’t imagine the Gong cha brand in better hands to expand our footprint and create more loyal guests in new markets,” Geoff Henry, president of Gong cha Americas, said in the release. “We also feel confident in their plan to open multi-brand locations, which will create operational synergies and further accelerate growth.” 

Source: Fastcasual 

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