Limited service-restaurants remained relatively unshaken in 2020 despite the challenges that many other consumer foodservice players faced during the year due to the decline in foot traffic in outlets. Although overall consumer foodservice in South Korea has been seriously impacted by strict social distancing measures as a result of increasing cases of COVID-19, delivery services are likely to have somewhat countered lost revenue from eat-in sales.
With slowing current value growth within the channel, players are increasingly adopting multi-menu strategies to attract consumers. For example, Goopne Chicken, which specialises in baked chicken, began to offer pizza from late 2019 and further expanded this type of menu in 2020.
Following the emergence of the subscription model amongst a variety of consumer goods over the review period, consumer foodservice witnessed the introduction of monthly subscription services for coffee and sandwiches in 2020. Paris Baguette, a bakery products limited-service restaurant brand globally owned by SPC Group, test-launched its subscription service in July 2020 and introduced it officially in franchised outlets from the October.
Prior to the pandemic, limited-service restaurants had been recording stable growth in South Korea, as the channel increasingly replaced regular meals for busy consumers. Heading into the forecast period, the channel is expected to see steady growth as the threat level of the virus weakens.
Convenience stores have been expanding options within foodservice corners over the review period to attract consumers looking for light snacks during break times or in the evening. The channel is expected to serve a widened customer pool since an increasing number of South Koreans experienced foodservice options in convenience stores in 2020 in response to the temporary closures of bars/pubs.
After experiencing a steep decline in terms of eat-in orders during the first outbreak of COVID-19 in Q1 2020, leading players started to open delivery-only outlets in order to respond to growing demand for home delivery orders while minimising fixed costs. For instance, Genesis BBQ launched a pilot outlet called BBQ Smart Kitchen in April 2020, expanding to open its 100th outlet in December 2020.
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