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Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Paris Baguette: Attack on Baguette in Korea

Paris Baguette Dongseongno Maldives Branch at the Birthplace of President Park Geun-hye
Address: 25 Dongseong Avenue 5th Street/Dongseongno 5-gil, Samdeok-dong 1-ga 5-2 beonji, Daegu Jung-gu
Paris Baguette is a South Korean franchise bakery that utilizes authentic French baking, a subsidiary of Paris Croissant. In 1988, Paris Croissant launched Paris Baguette, which grew into a top bakery café franchise brand in Korea due to the opening of the first store in Gwanghwamun Square, Seoul Jongno-gu. Paris Croissant and Paris Baguette are the brands that specialized on French Bakery, under the helm of SPC Group; leaded by its chairman, Hur Young-in (허영인).

With the expansion into the Chinese market in 2004, the company began going global and now has local subsidiaries in the US, Vietnam, and Singapore. Other F&B brands include Paris Croissant Café (premium bakery café), Pascucci (Italian espresso café), LINA’s and Tamati (sandwich), Passion5 (upscale dessert gallery), L’atelier (café restaurant), and Jamba Juice (smoothie). The company is also rapidly gaining traction in the restaurant industry with brands such as Queens Park (organic), LaGrilla (Italian), The World Vine (wine), Parlour (European casual cuisine) and Vera Napoli.

In the United States, Paris Baguette is named as Paris Baguette Café. Most of Paris Baguette Café's chains are located near the Los Angeles metropolitan area and is substantially increasing ever since 2008. It has stores in California, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania where these areas are the place where Korean-American Residents reside.

In 2014, Paris Baguette has finally opened a storefront in its namesake city. According to the Korea Herald, it is located in Central Paris near the Pont Neuf Bridge and is called Paris Baguette Chatelet. The 200-square-meter, 46-seat store is "expected to serve as the company's global flagship store." Paris Baguette will "hire French bakers and focus its menu on French breads, pastries, and sandwiches" in an effort to appeal to local consumers. The menu will also feature "exclusive" items like fresh cream chiffon cakes and special "stuffed" breads.

Hur Young-in, the chairman of SPC Group — the parent company of Paris Baguette — tells the paper that the company regards "France as the spiritual home of our bakery products" and that the company hopes to reach out to the "global market by leveraging our experience in France." In addition to the store in Paris, Paris Baguette has over 3,000 stores in South Korea, 125 in China, 37 in America, 11 in Vietnam and six in Singapore.

In 2015, Paris Baguette will open in Malaysia resulting from the collaboration of Naza Corp Holdings and SPC Group via mutual of understanding (MoU) signed by these companies. In five years, SPC Group will open 30 outlets throughout Malaysia with its initial plan to open five outlets in Klang Valley. 

Paris Baguette Seorae Village Branch at HaHa's Hometown
Address: 47 Seorae Avenue/Seorae-ro, Banpo 4-dong 94-5 beonji, Seoul Seocho-gu