DBE sees tastier prospects with HARUMi ex­pan­sion

DBE Gur­ney di­ver­si­fy­ing down­stream, plans to open more out­lets in Klang Val­ley

New Straits Times - - Business - OOI TEE CHING KUALA LUMPUR bt@me­di­aprima.com.my

DBE Gur­ney Re­sources Bhd sees brighter prospects in the Year of the Rooster as it opens more HARUMi fast­food out­lets in Klang Val­ley, fol­low­ing a solid pres­ence in Perak.

“DBE Gur­ney is di­ver­si­fy­ing down­stream. We want to trans­form our­selves into a food and bev­er­age group to reap bet­ter val­u­a­tion,” said group man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Datuk Alex Ding Seng Huat.

“We are aim­ing for higher profit mar­gins from the busi­ness of just farm­ing and pro­cess­ing live poul­try. We’re mov­ing up the value chain from just be­ing a farmer to be­come a more ser­vice-ori­ented busi­ness en­tity,” he told NST Busi­ness in an in­ter­view, here.

In April last year, DBE Gur­ney signed a part­ner­ship agree­ment with a group of Tai­wanese in­vestors. HARUMi, Malaysia’s ha­lal-cer­ti­fied lo­cal fried chicken brand, is born out of the col­lab­o­ra­tion to of­fer li­cens­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for young en­trepreneurs in the food and bev­er­age in­dus­try.

So far, this down­stream ven­ture has helped DBE Gur­ney get back into the black af­ter re­port­ing losses for 12 years. Last year, DBE Gur­ney posted a RM250,000 net profit com­pared with a RM10.75 mil­lion loss in 2015. This was on the back of a 5.5 per cent drop in rev­enue to RM112.98 mil­lion, from RM119.55 mil­lion in 2015.

Ding said the Tai­wanese in­vestors in HARUMi planned to buy a key stake in DBE Gur­ney within two years.

Asked if HARUMi was in di­rect com­pe­ti­tion with Ken­tucky Fried Chicken (KFC), Ding said its busi­ness re­la­tion­ship with the gi­ant con­tin­ued to be cor­dial.

Ken­tucky Fried Chicken (M) Sdn Bhd (KFCM), KFC (Penin­su­lar Malaysia) Sdn Bhd and QSR Stores Sdn Bhd re­newed a fresh cut poul­try sup­ply con­tract re­cently with DBE Gur­ney for its out­lets in Perak and Se­lan­gor es­ti­mated at RM50 mil­lion.

KFCM and KFC (Penin­su­lar Malaysia) are sub­sidiaries of KFC Hold­ings (M) Bhd, which in turn is owned by QSR Brands (M) Hold­ings Sdn Bhd.

“HARUMi’s busi­ness model is quite dif­fer­ent from KFC. We have a va­ri­ety of point of sales from restau­rants, ex­press out­lets, food trucks to kiosks,” said Ding.

“Also, HARUMi restau­rants are not in shop­ping malls. They are lo­cated at more af­ford­able sites where col­lege and uni­ver­sity stu­dents tend to clus­ter,” he said.

Asked if the Year of the Rooster would give im­pe­tus for HARUMi’s ex­pan­sion plans, Ding said: “Malaysia is one of the world’s high­est poul­try con­sumers at 42kg per capita per year. Malaysians love poul­try. We can eat chicken for break­fast, lunch and din­ner.”

DBE Gur­ney’s pro­cess­ing cen­tre in Perak is able to pack 1.5 mil­lion chicken cuts per month.

“In the longer term, we hope to repli­cate HARUMi in In­done­sia, Brunei, Thai­land, Myan­mar, China and in Tai­wan, too,” said Ding.

DBE Gur­ney op­er­ates a 114,000-tonne-per-year feed­mill and a 60,000-bird-per-day slaugh­ter house in Si­ti­awan.

The group has six breeder farms with a ca­pac­ity of 100,000 birds per year, 11 broiler farms that can sup­ply 10 mil­lion birds per year, and a hatch­ery with six sets of in­cu­ba­tors that can pro­duce 12 mil­lion eggs a year.

DBE Gur­ney Re­sources Bhd

group man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Datuk Alex Ding Seng Huat

DBE Gur­ney group man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Datuk Alex Ding Seng Huat

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