The Real Deal! Lester Yu’s Balai nine-month earnings soar 1,000% after IPO

Food kiosk king Lester Yu hits another home run as Balai Ni Fruitas Inc. (BALAI) posted a 1,000 percent growth in profits in one year.

From only P2.3 million in September 2021, BALAI’s net income grew tenfold to P23.2 million this year.

BALAI’s success is attributed to the rapid and strategic store network expansion of its brands, led by Balai Pandesal which now has 43 stores—seven of which recently opened during the second half of the year —from the initial five at the time of its acquisition in June 2021.

To keep the momentum going, Yu, president of BALAI implemented strategic price adjustments to cope with increasing raw material prices. This has proven to be a success as evidenced in BALAI’s EBITDA that has stayed strong at 19.5 percent.

As of October this year or seven months after its IPO, BALAI continues to accelerate its growth, with 91 active stores nationwide for its three fresh brands — 43 Balai Pandesal stores, 39 Buko Ni Fruitas, and nine Fruitas House of Desserts.

“We have significantly grown the Balai Pandesal brand in just over a year since our acquisition, and we can confidently say that we’re on track to make Balai Pandesal the leading mid-priced community bakery in the country. We have the IPO as well to thank for the sufficient resources to further accelerate expansion, and grow our capacity and product offerings,” said Yu.

BALAI’s success is concurrent with its parent company Fruitas’ stellar third quarter performance which reversed its net loss in 2021.

“We are optimistic about the last quarter of the year and we hope to conclude the year on a high note by encouraging our customers to have BALAI products as part of their festivities,” Yu added.