Camila Escobar, President of Colombian-based multinational coffeehouse Juan Valdez talks to Global Coffee Report about the significance of opening its 500th store.
According to Juan Valdez President Camila Escobar, the renowned Plaza Salvador del Mundo is one of the most visited places by locals and tourists in El Salvador. This is why it was chosen as the location for the company’s 500th store.
“The monument of the Divino Salvador del Mundo, located in La Plaza Salvador del Mundo, is considered a national symbol in El Salvador, a place where many of this nation’s celebrations are held,” says Camila Escobar.
“We decided to open our Juan Valdez store in this location due to its relevance, making it the first in the franchisee to be branded under the new brand architecture model, which aims to highlight the in-store experience and have greater recognition at a local level.”
Escobar says the company is proud to have 500 stores worldwide. For more than 15 years Juan Valdez has been consolidating a robust expansion plan.
“We aim to be the global benchmark of 100 per cent Colombian premium coffee and with it, engage more and more consumers to fall in love with this product of our country,” Escobar says.
She adds that Juan Valdez’s Colombian coffee has fascinated Salvadorians with its unique flavour, adding value in the market.
“Consumers can find the Juan Valdez experience in our stores through different beverages based on coffee from diverse regions of Colombia, which represent the more than 540,000 coffee growing families and their work,” Escobar says.
“We adapt to local preferences through our menu of food and other beverages besides coffee that are created both with traditional products from Colombia, but also with local tastes from the country. Additionally, we have focused on creating spaces in our stores that connect the Salvadorian consumers with the brand’s essence.”
Escobar says the opening of its 500th store allows Juan Valdez to highlight the work of the thousands of Colombian coffee producers.
“[They] are the essence of our brand and whom we work for with passion and commitment. Furthermore, this leads us to continue growing and sharing with the world everything about the premium coffee tradition of the country,” she says.
“This achievement confirms the effort and work that we have been executing for the past 20 years and reaffirms the strength of our brand at a national and international level, allowing us to capitalise better opportunities in new markets and to increase our impact in regions in which we have a presence.”
The achievement arises from the alliance between Juan Valdez and the franchisee Corporación JV de Centroamérica, that, since 2013, has led the brand in El Salvador.
“In more than 10 years of operation in El Salvador, we have seen positive results for the brand, giving the company recognition among local consumers and tourists. Due to this partnership, we have opened 10 stores all around the country, located in shopping malls and touristic areas in the Salvadorian capital,” Escobar says.
During 2022, Juan Valdez has continued to position itself in Latin America and the United States, where it has one of the highest growth rates in its mass consumption channel. It has plans to continue to strengthen its expansion in Spain, Qatar, Turkey, Argentina, Mexico, and Canada.
“Through our Juan Valdez Stores, with a presence in more than 15 countries, we seek to bring the best from Colombia and our coffee, tailoring the needs for local consumers around innovation, recipes, and experience,” Escobar says.
She adds that the reason for such a high growth rate and its ability to stand out at an international level, is largely due to Colombia’s reputation as a coffee growing country.
“Throughout the years, we have strived to produce a high-quality product that represents the work of the coffee growers from our country. Also, our stores bring the best-in-class quality, service and experience that is very appealing to demanding and expert consumers,” says Escobar.
“In the United States, the brand has been able to grow based on its internationalisation strategy, which is focused on innovation in the different market channels of El Salvador. As a result, more local consumers are connecting with our brand and the history behind it in stores, supermarkets, and online channels.”
Escobar says Juan Valdez plans to become one of the leading brands in coffee consumption worldwide.
“For the past 20 years we have been focused on being one of the most recognised brands in the world due to its healthy growth and sustainable impact. This has been an ongoing effort with our partners who have the same purpose, and that is translated into an explicit commitment to shared economic, social, and environmental value,” says Escobar.
“By having more than 10 coffee origins that come from different regions of Colombia, we have created a competitive advantage regarding our products. Thus, the quality of our production provides a unique experience for consumers around the world, as well as the educational focus around coffee, which has become one of the main purposes of the brand since it allows us to share the work of coffee growers and their expertise.”
The company also expects to expand its coverage in large supermarkets, digital channels, and stores, including key regions such as the Middle East and North Africa, North America, and Europe, to generate interaction and a greater reach to new generations.
“These market channels represent diverse types of consumption, which enables an opportunity to expand our products to more consumers from different segments, offering an omnichannel brand. We have been working to enhance the experience that we offer with our 100 per cent premium Colombian coffee and our products, which include packaged coffee, high quality pastries, hot and cold beverages, among others,” Escobar says.
Juan Valdez reaffirms its intention to continue promoting the Colombian countryside and the work of coffee-growing families who strive to raise the country’s name and share their coffee to the world.
“Our purpose has been focused on generating shared value through a sustainable platform that includes multidimensional strengthening programs, such as Mujeres Cafeteras and Renacer, initiatives that support the coffee growers and generate an impact in their lives,” says Escobar.
“Being part of the Colombian coffee industry is a responsibility with our country. We have the priority of promoting our coffee tradition, since this represents us globally and differentiates us as a brand.”
For more information, visit www.juanvaldezcafe.com
This article was first published in the July/August 2022 edition of Global Coffee Report. Read more HERE.