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Calbee withdraws from the Philippine Market

Japan’s Calbee is pulling out its potato chip venture in the Philippines with its partner URC (Universal Robina Corporation) after not making enough profit for three years.

The Snack-giant first started in the Philippines with its first snacks arrived on the shelves of stores in the country in early 2015. It was a good opportunity for URC to upgrade their premium product portfolio and to provide the growing Filipino consumers that have a more “sophisticated” taste, a new spin for their buck.

But a report posted by Calbee-URC stated that over a loss of P100.38 million (Philippine Peso) in 2015, P85.33 million in 2016, and around 95.65 million in 2017. Although the Snack Market is still promising in the Philippines, the annual loss that Calbee suffered in the local market pushed them to make a choice to just pull out of the joint-venture with URC.

Calbee said that the products are too expensive for Filipinos and had agreed to sell the 50% stake in the Calbee-URC Inc. to its business partner URC that is owned by the Gokongwei family for P170.6 million.

Although Calbee pulled out from the Philippine market and for the Filipinos to wave “Sayonara” (Goodbye) to the company, URC will still be producing and selling the products to the local market under a licensing agreement with Calbee.

The company is the newest Japanese consumer company to abandon the Philippine market which they say is a competitive market, but their products will still remain in the shelves in many grocery stores and will still leave a smile to Filipinos who eat their snacks.