This is my first letter to you, our shareholders, since assuming the role of Chairman of Café de Coral.My appointment to this position is indeed a great honour for me.
In my journey of more than 30 years with Café de Coral, the past few years have been particularly eventful and rewarding. The successful implementation of our management succession plan as well as the establishment of a solid sustainability platform were key milestones during my tenure as the CEO of the Group. This platform, which not only aligns with our founders’ values but also complies with the modern international standards of sustainability, guides us in the way we do business and will help to shape our growth. In my new role as Chairman, I will maintain the same values and philosophy laid down by our founders that have helped us grow from a small shop in Causeway Bay into a thriving network of diverse restaurants capable of withstanding changes in the market.
I would like to thank Mr Michael Chan, our former Chairman, with whom I have worked alongside for over three decades. Under his leadership, we have witnessed the rapid growth and expansion of the Café de Coral Group. For his contributions to the Company, we owe him a great debt of gratitude.
I would also like to welcome Mr Peter Lo, who has succeeded me as the CEO of the Group. During his past 20 years with Café de Coral, Peter has performed important functions within the Group and led major projects for the growth and development of our business and operations. Peter was also a key driver in crafting the Group’s current 5-year strategic plan. Under his leadership, I am confident that Café de Coral will continue to move to the next level in our development.
A YEAR OF PROGRESS
I am delighted to report that during the review period we made great progress with our succession plan in grooming our internal talent and bringing aboard a new generation of senior executives. This seasoned, vibrant management team will lead the Group into a new era of business and organisational growth.
During the year, we also made further investments in the infrastructure required to sustain our business. Although these investments may have had an impact on our financial performance, they are part of our long-term commitment to growth and will be instrumental in building on our strengths and skills for the future.
For the year ahead, we see both challenges and opportunities for our business. In Hong Kong, consumer sentiment has been softening but we also see a downward trend in rental costs that will open doors for our continuing expansion. The quick service restaurant (QSR) segment, our core business, will remain strong and maintain its market-leading position. In our fast casual and casual dining business, we will push forward our efforts to scale up while making constant adjustments in response to changing market conditions. Mainland China, while still challenging, continues to be a growth engine for the Group.
Over the last 48 years, we have seen many changes at Café de Coral and in the markets we serve. We will likely experience additional challenges in the future, yet with the strong reputation of our brands, our dynamic management team and the ongoing implementation of our strategic plan, we are fully prepared to enter a new phase of development and growth.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Board for their confidence in my abilities to lead the Company as the new Chairman. I would also like to thank all of our hard-working staff, whose dedication and commitment to our Company has been outstanding. I look forward to working with all of you and continuing Café de Coral’s values and tradition of excellence in the years ahead.
Lo Hoi Kwong, Sunny
Hong Kong, 22 June 2016