Jollibee to open London flagship as it ramps up UK expansion

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Filipino fast food fried chicken chain Jollibee to open London flagship as it ramps up UK expansion

Related tags Filipino cuisine Restaurant Fried chicken QSR Fast food Jollibee

Filipino fast food chain Jollibee is to open a new flagship UK site in London's Leicester Square next year, with openings in Edinburgh, Leeds and Cardiff also planned.

The group will launch its third UK location in Leicester later this week; a 134-cover site that's noted as being the first Jollibee in the country to sell all Halal meat.

Back in August Jollibee announced plans to open 50 restaurants across the UK​ in the next three to five years, as well as grow its presence in Italy, Spain and other European markets.

Alongside plans to open in Edinburgh, Leeds and Cardiff, other cities it is expected to target during the course of its expansion drive include Manchester and Birmingham.

Founded in the Philippines back in 1978, Jollibee operates more than 1,466 stores globally, 1,185 of which are in the Philippines.

The chain is best known for its Chickenjoy fried chicken; Jolly Spaghetti, which is topped with chopped up hot dogs and tomato sauce; and a breakfast dish of corned beef with garlic rice and egg.

Jollibee opened its first UK restaurant in London’s Earl’s Court back in 2018.

Some diners are understood to have queued for 18 hours at the launch event, and the restaurant reportedly sold more than half a million pieces of chicken in its first two weeks of trading.

The group, which also operates a site in Liverpool that opened in September this year, describes the UK as 'a key market for expansion'.

According to its research the British 'spend a €1.2bn on quick-service chicken per year, compared to €652m in Germany and €700m in France'.

“We’re pushing forward with our continued growth plan across Europe, as we believe that both the high streets and people’s livelihoods need the support once we come out the other side of this pandemic," says Adam Parkinson, market head of Europe for Jollibee.

"Leicester was an obvious choice for us for our first midlands store.

“I am excited to be launching our third Jollibee in the UK, and the second in only the last two months."

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