F&B service providers battle for market share

  • 02:31 - 2017/12/27

Hotels not only have to compete in the food & beverage sector, a major source of revenue, but also in the restaurant chain and food court market.

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The Ben Thanh Street Food Market in HCMC

On a recent Friday, Thuy Tien, the owner of a small business in HCMC, left a message on a Facebook account owned by an organic food company, ordering Norwegian tuna, lamb ribs, Australian beef, vegetable and fruit for a family party.

“Previously, when I wanted to organize parties, I would have to go to supermarkets. But now I prefer preparing delicious dishes at home, because the supply is plentiful and the delivery is convenient,” she said.

The organic food company from which Tien ordered food usually gives clients special spices and guides how to cook. So everything can be done easily and quickly.

Clients like Thuy Tien are those whom Mai, an F&B director at a hotel on Nguyen Hue Street in HCMC, is trying to approach.

F&B, together with room services, are major sources of revenue for hotels. However, in recent years, hotels have lost many clients like Tien to rivals -  restaurant chains, food courts and food supply companies.

The number of clients ordering wedding parties has decreased because of the establishment of wedding centers, while walk-in customers and office workers now tend to go to food courts instead of hotels.

F&B, together with room services, are major sources of revenue for hotels. However, in recent years, hotels have lost many clients to rivals -  restaurant chains, food courts and food supply companies.

According to Mai, in the past, if customers wanted French and Italian dishes or good beefsteak, they would go to hotels.

 However, now, restaurants specializing in European dishes on Hai Ba Trung and Le Thanh Ton streets serve the dishes. Many restaurants have been set up with diverse menus and reasonable prices.

Lam Quang Huy, deputy general director of the 5-star Grand Hotel on Dong Khoi street, admitted there was competition with restaurants.

As restaurants focus on providing food and beverages, they can change menus quickly to keep pace with new trends.

The equipment in hotels will be replaced only after the depreciation period ends, and the menus cannot change frequently.

“To attract customers, it is necessary to create differences. We have to usually change menus, concept and counter designs,” said Hoang Minh Chau, marketing director of the Liberty hotel chain.

Analysts said that customers now not only want delicious food, but also want to discover indigenous culinary culture.

The 5-star Rex Hotel last week organized the Sai Gon food discovery program in which it introduced many street dishes. The dishes were served with stories about their names and origin.

However, Mai believes that hotels still have advantages over restaurants to attract customers. Luxury hotels offer spaces for working and give professional service, she said. 

Kim Chi

Source: VietNamNet

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