VietNamNet Bridge – More and more take-away coffee brands, both domestic and
foreign, have appeared on the market, creating a new tendency of enjoying coffee
among the youth.
Huynh Thi Thanh Nga, the owner of a pavement coffee shop on Han Hai Nguyen
Street in HCM City, noted that previously, connoisseur people liked the coffee
with strong coffee flavor, while nowadays, the youth and office workers tend to
drink coffee more regularly, considering this a kind of refresher.
Nga has noted that the western-styled coffee has low caffeine concentration,
therefore, it can be drunk many times within a day. Especially, it has been
favored by the youth because of the modern style.
In fact, Nga has been selling take-away coffee for a long time already to the
customers who prefer enjoying coffee at their homes or offices. However, only
when foreign coffee brands like Coffee Bean Tea Leaf, Gloria Jean’s Coffees,
Angel In Us, and Starbucks recently, turned up in Vietnam, did the concept “take
away coffee” or “to go coffee” become popular.
Western style coffee’s customers are the young people who like discoveries and
new tastes, who account for a half of the total population.
A report of the international coffee organization ICO showed that in 2008-2011,
the volume of coffee consumed in Vietnam increased by 65 percent. Especially,
the growth rate was very high at 31 percent in 2010. This showed the great
potentials for coffee brands in Vietnam.
Since the day Passio opened its first café in Vietnam in December 2006, its
chain has had 10 shops to date. Effoc, which turned up in Vietnam in August
2008, now has developed into a chain with 8 shops. A lot of other coffee brands
have also joined the market, including Freddo Coffee, Urban Station Coffee,
Most recently, La Fontaine opened its first shop on Hai Ba Trung Street in
district 1 in HCM City in January 2013, and the second shop in district 5 just
three weeks later. It plans to develop a chain with 10 shops in 2013 with more
shops to be set up in the districts of HCM City, before it develops all over the
Tran Thi Phuong Dung, Director of La Fontaine chain, revealed that she plans to
make investment in a massive scale to cement the position in the domestic
Dung said foreign brands are not a threat to her, because they are not the
direct rivals of La Fontaine, while the market is still very large with enough
room for all.
“Foreign brands target high income earners, while we target medium class
customers, while the market segment is large enough,” Dung said.
Analysts have noted that it’s now the time for take-away coffee to boom. Cafés
have been mushrooming partially because of the low investment rates required.
While the other investors need large retail premises with gardens and good view
which require big investment capital, the owners of take-away café just need to
spend VND200 million for a café with some 10 seats and VND100 million for a café
with no seat. That explains why take-away café is the favorite choice of the
Vietnamese young or start-up businessmen.
While foreign brand coffee has been selling at VND60,000-100,000 per cup,
Vietnamese brands target students and office workers, offering the prices lower
by 30-50 percent.
Effoc, for example, sells coffee at VND20,000 per cup, Buzz VND18,000-20,000,
Cactus VND12,000—30,000, La Fontaine VND30,000, Urban Station VND16,000-27,000.