BIZ BUZZ: A 'sweet deal' for Lester Yu

BIZ BUZZ: A ‘sweet deal’ for Lester Yu

/ 06:00 AM April 15, 2024

After taking over noodle house Ling Nam in 2022 and cloud kitchen Fly Kitchen in 2023, businessman Lester Yu won’t let this Year of the Dragon go by without another legacy brand on his plate.

We hear that in the coming days, Balai ni Fruitas, the bakery-driven subsidiary of Yu-led Fruitas Holdings, may announce a new purchase. It’s a “small but pivotal” acquisition, a reliable industry source told Biz Buzz.

READ: Fruitas buys Ling Nam restaurants


It’s a bakeshop brand that has been operating for about four decades—one that used to be a lot bigger but is now left with only two branches, another source explained. However, it enjoys name recall and a cake commissary. Therefore, this acquisition is seen to accelerate the expansion of Balai ni Fruitas into the cake production business.


It has the technology and the infrastructure for Balai to build a new growth driver out of a higher value-added product beyond pan de sal, which is a low-margin but high-volume business.

Balai ni Fruitas, which now has about 80 shops, will still offer its own cake products catering to the more affordable segment. The new brand, on the other hand, will be positioned toward the “premium” cake segment.

And while the legacy brand only has two stores left, we hear that once the deal is finalized, Yu intends to not just bring back its old glory but bring the brand to new heights—in the same way that he grew Ling Nam fourfold in the last two years. —Doris Dumlao-Abadilla

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TAGS: acquisition, Balai ni Fruitas

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