Manila Bulletin

Res­tau­r­tant chain bares ex­pan­sion

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Gerry's Bar and Restau­rant, for­merly known as Gerry’s Grill, said it will put up more branches this year to keep up with the com­pe­ti­tion by keep­ing up and tar­get­ing the mil­len­ni­als.

Fran­cis Vil­laluz, se­nior mar­ket­ing man­ager of Gerry’s Restau­rant and Bar, said the orig­i­nal con­cept of Gerry’s to be a wind­ing hub has evolved through the years to be a din­ing place so it can re­main rel­e­vant and com­pet­i­tive in the cur­rent times. It nat­u­rally trans­formed into a fam­ily-ori­ented restau­rant be­cause of the de­mand of the times.

With the emer­gence of the dig­i­tal na­tives or more pop­u­larly known as the mil­len­ni­als, Vil­laluz said Gerry’s has quickly re­sponded to the growth of this seg­ment.

“We need to be­come rel­e­vant to the mod­ern times. From Mon­day to Fri­day, mil­len­ni­als dom­i­nate our restau­rants,” Vil­laluz noted.

In fact, Gerry’s has even man­aged to ex­pand over­seas par­tic­u­larly in Sin­ga­pore, Qatar, and the United States. It has 82 branches over­all.

Vil­laluz said Gerry’s will cre­ate a big bang this year with the es­tab­lish­ment of more branches to mark its 20 years in ser­vice.

“We want to be as­so­ci­ated with ac­tive peo­ple. In re­sponse, Gerry’s has been es­tab­lish­ing pres­ence in places where mil­len­ni­als tend to go such as malls,“he added.

Es­tab­lished in Fe­bru­ary 14, 1997 as a bar where peo­ple can un­wind, eat, drink, and re­lax, Gerry’s has en­dured the in­tense food bat­tle among ca­sual Filipino restau­rants.

To en­tice the mil­len­ni­als, Gerry’s has in­tro­duced more menus for this mar­ket. Known be­fore to of­fer their fa­mous siz­zling sisig and in­i­haw na pusit, Vil­laluz said Gerry’s in­tro­duced the Chicharon Liempo, Salt and Pep­per Squid, and Span­ish Style Ban­gus and other menus that have en­ticed the in­ter­est of mil­len­ni­als.

“Be­ing a bar and restau­rant, we are aware that we need to step up to be­come the ideal spot for the mil­len­ni­als. But as they grow older they will re­al­ize that Gerry’s will re­main rel­e­vant for them when they have their own fam­i­lies,” ex­plained Vil­laluz.

Still in re­sponse to the chang­ing times, Gerry’s shifted play­ing to band mu­sic from the mu­sic of the 80’s to cur­rent pop hits and mu­sic from You Tube stars. It also of­fered larger food serv­ings for mil­len­ni­als.

He men­tioned the mil­len­nial’s pen­chant for eat­ing has fa­vored Gerry’s. As more and more peo­ple, es­pe­cially young pro­fes­sion­als gained big­ger earn­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties, the more chances they will go out and eat at Gerry’s.

As much as pos­si­ble, Gerry’s keeps the pre­sen­ta­tion of their menus pleas­ing to the eye.

“Mil­len­ni­als eas­ily get at­tracted to ap­pear­ance of food. They love to post it in their IG ac­counts,” he said.

Vil­laluz said Gerry's will not rest on its lau­rels and will con­tinue to pro­mote Filipino food to the world as part of the ad­vo­cacy of the com­pany.

"It is our way of thank­ing the Filipinos that made Gerry's a house­hold name since 1997. He is a be­liever that Filipino food is world-class." (BCM)

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