Chatime: Taiwan owner says new master franchisee identified

(from left) La Kaffa International Co Ltd International Sales Team head Hank Wang, chairman Henry Wang and executive vice-president Teresa Wang.
(From left) La Kaffa International Co Ltd International Sales Team head Hank Wang, chairman Henry Wang and executive vice-president Teresa Wang.

KUALA LUMPUR: The Taiwanese owner of the Chatime brand, La Kaffa International Co Ltd have identified a new master franchisee for Malaysia.

La Kaffa chairman Henry Wang said that Malaysia is an important market for Chatime and they want to continue growing the brand here.

“We have identified the franchisee, but we have not signed any agreement yet.

“We are confident of the Chatime brand and we want to continue to expand the franchise in Malaysia,” he told reporters at a press conference held at the Double Tree Hilton here today.

La Kaffa’s search for a new master franchisee began after a dispute with its former master franchisee, Loob Holding Sdn Bhd, since late last year.

The dispute resulted in the Taiwanese company abruptly terminating the contract, despite there being another 24 years left for Loob to be the sole franchisee in the country. The contract was to run until 2041.

La Kaffa executive vice-president Teresa Wang said that they are confident that close to 50 out of the 165 franchisees will continue to collaborate with Chatime.

“We have good response from the franchisees and we would like to continue to work with them,” she said.

Loob and La Kaffa are now expected to settle any legal disputes in the Singapore International Arbitration Centre, as is stipulated in the Master Franchisee Agreement.

“Based on our agreement with Loob if there is any arbitration, it will be carried out in Singapore.

“We had submitted our claims last year and we will wait for the legal process to take place.”

Malaysia is the second biggest market for Chatime, next to Taiwan.