SHANGHAI, Nov. 29, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The China roots of Yum China Holdings, Inc. (the "Company" or "Yum China") (NYSE: YUMC) stem from the opening of the first KFC store in Beijing in November 1987. Since then, the Company has flourished and become a leading player in the restaurant industry in the world's second largest economy. To commemorate 30 years of operating in China, Yum China held a celebration event in Shanghai with over 200 esteemed guests.
"KFC was one of the first foreign brands to provide Chinese consumers with a window to the West and was quickly followed by Pizza Hut. Both brands are firmly embedded in the memories of an entire generation of Chinese consumers. Even today, as we expand our presence to smaller cities, KFC is often the first foreign restaurant brand experienced by Chinese people," said Micky Pant, Yum China's Chief Executive Officer. "I am incredibly proud of everything we have achieved over the past thirty years. We could not have done this without the support of our customers, partners and employees, and we are extremely grateful for their contribution to Yum China's story."
Since opening the first KFC store in Beijing, Yum China has become an independent, publicly traded company, expanded to over 7,700 restaurants in more than 1,100 cities, and now employs over 420,000 people across mainland China. Beyond its significant restaurant footprint, the Company has driven the sustainable development of the industry by establishing an integrated national supply chain and introducing world-class practices in areas including employee training, supply chain management, food safety and restaurant management.
Yum China has also been at the forefront of innovation in the restaurant industry, developing unique dishes to suit the preferences of Chinese consumers, and rapidly expanding its digital and delivery capabilities to improve the customer experience by implementing cutting-edge technologies such as cashless payments and facial recognition payment. As of the end of August 2017, Yum China had more than 120 million loyalty members and over 5,100 restaurants across China offering delivery services.
"With ongoing urbanization, a burgeoning middle class and significant investment in infrastructure, we believe there is an incredible opportunity to expand our business in China. Yum China's journey continues and we have a clear strategy for growth," said Joey Wat, President and Chief Operating Officer of Yum China.
The Company's four strategic priorities include maintaining focus on China and investing locally for growth; strengthening the core business through menu innovation, improving stores and a commitment to improve quality and value; investing and maintaining the lead in digital and delivery; and innovating across the business in product categories, store formats and day parts.
"Innovation is at the heart of our strategy, and we will continue to introduce new menu items, store formats, and day parts. Staying close to our customers remains fundamental to our success and we will enhance our digital engagement and delivery efforts so that we can continue to improve the customer experience," said Joey Wat.
Beyond serving millions of customers, Yum China has always been committed to contributing to the communities that it serves. One example is the One Yuan Donation program, launched together with the China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation in 2008. The initiative encourages employees and customers to donate a single yuan to improve the diet and nutrition of students across China. Now celebrating its 10th year, it has become one of the largest public donation campaigns in China and has raised RMB170 million, provided over 35 million nutritional meals and funded 840 "Love Kitchens", benefiting more than 500,000 children across ten provinces in China.
The Company also has a long history of supporting research into nutrition and balanced diets. In 2007, Yum China and the Chinese Red Cross Foundation established the KFC China Health Foundation. In May 2017, Yum China partnered with the Chinese Nutrition Society ("CNS"), China's top professional organization dedicated to the research and application of the healthy nutrition practices, to form the CNS-Yum China Dietary Health Foundation. The newly formed Foundation continues the work that was started by the KFC China Health Foundation and reaffirms the Company's commitment to supporting research and development in the field of nutritional science.
This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Forward-looking statements generally can be identified by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts and by the use of forward-looking words such as "expect," "expectation," "believe," "anticipate," "may," "could," "intend," "belief," "plan," "estimate," "target," "predict," "likely," "will," "should," "forecast," "outlook" or similar terminology. These statements are based on current estimates and assumptions made by us in light of our experience and perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments, as well as other factors that we believe are appropriate and reasonable under the circumstances, but there can be no assurance that such estimates and assumptions will prove to be correct. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of performance and are inherently subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict and could cause our actual results to differ materially from those indicated by those statements. We cannot assure you that any of our expectations, estimates or assumptions will be achieved. The forward-looking statements included in this press release are only made as of the date of this press release, and we disclaim any obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement to reflect subsequent events or circumstances, except as required by law. All forward-looking statements should be evaluated with the understanding of their inherent uncertainty. You should consult our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (including the information set forth under the captions "Risk Factors" and "Forward-Looking Statements" in our Annual Report on Form 10-K) for additional detail about factors that could affect our financial and other results.
About Yum China Holdings, Inc.
Yum China Holdings, Inc. is a licensee of Yum! Brands in mainland China. It has exclusive rights in mainland China to KFC, China's leading quick-service restaurant brand, Pizza Hut, the leading casual dining restaurant brand in China, and Taco Bell, which opened its first restaurant in China at the end of 2016. Yum China also owns the Little Sheep and East Dawning concepts outright. Yum China is well positioned for growth thanks to its strong competitive position, integration of its brands into Chinese popular culture and consumers' daily lives, expanding geographic footprint in China and existing operational expertise. It has a strong capital position, no external debt and expects to continue growing its system sales and profit by adding new restaurants and through growing same-store sales. Yum China had more than 7,700 restaurants and more than 420,000 employees in over 1,100 cities at the end of August 2017. A new generation of younger consumers who are digitally sophisticated and brand driven are fueling growth in consumption in China. The ongoing growth of the middle class and urban population in China is expected to create the world's largest market for restaurant brands, with Yum China poised to be the market leader.
Yum China Media Contacts
Forest Liu, Director, Finance Media, at +86 21 2407 7505
Anne Bark, Brunswick Group, at +86 21 6039 6388
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