Lebanon Businessnews News

Semsom breaks into the US market
Major expansion plan in the
Arab World
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Local dining chain Semsom is planning an ambitious regional and international expansion plan. The Lebanese cuisine chain is expecting to take a major step by entering the American market.

“Our plan is to open 200 outlets by 2020 in the US market,” said Christine Sfeir, CEO of Treats Holding, owner of the concept. This will not be a franchising move, all branches will be managed directly by Treats Holding. For this reason, Semsom is now working on raising capital with FFA Private Bank.

The eatery plans to open an additional branch in Jeddah to total three. It will also enter Riyadh with two new branches, expected soon. Semsom franchises its Saudi operations to Al Mathaaq, whose Managing Partner is Bandar Al Sulaiman. Semsom has been in the KSA since three years.

The brand will enter the Kuwaiti market for the first time on January 25. The franchisee is Sabeco, whose managing partner is Lebanese national, Jihad Mekawi.

A new entry for Semsom is also expected soon in Oman. This outlet will be located in Muscat’s MGM Mall.

Sfeir said that more outlets are under study and negotiation for the region. “We are currently looking for an appropriate location in Dubai, and studying expansion in Egypt.”

Another food concept by Treats, Green Falafel, will also branch out to Saudi Arabia, in the summer of 2014. “We are through our final negotiation phase to open 15 outlets in 18 months.” Green Falafel was launched locally, in late 2012 as a prototype.

Sfeir said that many more markets are expected, in the future.
Reported by Rana Freifer
Date Posted: Jan 17, 2014
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