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McDonald’s to open first store in Hanoi

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KFC, Lotteria and Burger King have been competing fiercely in Hanoi for the last 10-20 years. But McDonald’s has now finally entered the picture after arriving in Vietnam three years ago.

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At No 2 Hang Bai street, a McDonald’s signboard has been hung, which signals its opening in the near future. 

Hang Bai street is a commercial hub in the capital city, while No 2 Hang Bai is believed to be “golden land” for retailers. It faces two bustling streets Hang Khay and Hang Bai and has a view over Hoan Kiem Lake, where foreign travelers congregate and Hanoians go on the weekend.

A representative of McDonald’s confirmed that a restaurant will open at the address. He said the company is preparing for opening day this year.

Opening its first store in February 2014, McDonald’s has since opened 17 restaurants, all located in HCMC. The fast food giant came to Vietnam later than its rivals, and was slow in entering the northern market.

Lotteria, a rival from South Korea, has been in Vietnam since 1998 and leads the fast-food industry with 200 restaurants. In Hanoi, there are 35 Lotteria restaurants. 

KFC, the well-known fried chicken brand, joined the Vietnamese market in late 1997. The US fast food chain now has 140 restaurants in Vietnam, including 35 in Hanoi.

Burger King, which came to Vietnam just two years before McDonald’s, ha 15 restaurants, including seven in Hanoi.

Analysts commented that the difficulties in finding suitable retail premises in Hanoi were one of the biggest obstacles to McDonald’s and retail chains.

According to Savills, a real estate service provider, the occupancy rate of retail premises in the third quarter of the year reached 98 percent. The rate is 100 percent in areas of the central district of Hoan Kiem.

The analysts also said that McDonald’s was cautious in its plan to open the market as McDonald’s provides food products which remain unfamiliar to Vietnamese. The business story of Burger King, which has burgers as the core product like McDonald’s, could be a lesson.

Burger King in the past said that it would spend $40 million to develop a chain of restaurants throughout the country. But it has shut down many restaurants in large cities.

In January 2016, Burger King shop on Cao Thang street in district 3 in HCM City shut down. Two other Burger King shops also stopped operation in 2015, including one at No 26-28 Pham Hong Thai street in HCM City and one at No 125 Lo Duc street in Hanoi.


Source: VietNamNet