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Taiwan's 85C coffee chain voices support for cross-strait trade pact

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Taiwan's 85C Bakery Cafe (85度C) voiced its support for the Cross-Strait Trade in Services Agreement yesterday while outlining plans to expand its presence in the China market by opening a number of chain locations featuring revamped facilities to promote its new brand identity.

Amid ongoing social discord, the company yesterday expressed its confidence in facing competition from across the strait. Chairman Chiu Chih-hong (邱志宏) stated that that company's efforts in expanding toward the China market had begun in December of 2007, and had since prospered in the highly competitive restaurant business field. Since 2007, the company has established 423 locations throughout China.

Chiu remarked that the company had also achieved success in the U.S., home to numerous international coffee shop chains and deeply entrenched local operators. The company has since established 10 locations throughout the U.S., with its Newark branch garnering average daily revenues of US$40,000.

In addition, Chiu said Taiwanese brands retain a considerable advantage in higher standards in product quality and service standards against local competitors in the China market, adding that many of his peers from Taiwan have garnered similar success across the strait. According to Chiu, Chinese competitors vying for the Taiwan market would need to match stellar product quality and service standards offered by local companies.

“I support all policies that aid in promoting cross-strait trade and revenues growth,” said Chiu.

Meanwhile, the company is poised to establish a new location in Beijing's Dazhalan (大柵欄) business district, a renown shopping destination, to promote its new brand identity. The company explained that it intends to transition from its quick turnover rate business model and cater to the new demography of consumers who prefer to enjoy their coffee at a more leisurely pace. The new location will feature 30 seats equipped with complementary Wi-Fi connection. Two such locations were established earlier in Shanghai, said the company. In addition, the company stated that its largest flagship location will be established in Beijing's Daxing District (大興).

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This photo shows the latest flagship Beijing-based location opened by Taiwan's 85C Bakery Cafe (85度C), a coffee shop chain whose operations span the U.S., Australia and mainland China. The company intends to promote its new brand identity, transitioning from its quick turnover business model to accommodate a more leisurely paced experience. (CNA)

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