|A Tous Les Jours shop in Haverford, Pennsylvania / Courtesy of CJ Foodville|
By Kim Jae-heun
CJ Foodville, which operates the local bakery chain Tous Les Jours, will establish a large-scale bread factory in the United States, the company said Monday.
The food firm is currently looking for a suitable site and will begin construction next year at the earliest.
CJ Foodville opened its very first Tous Les Jours store in the United States in 2004. Now it operates a total of 82 stores in 21 states. The total number of shops is not large, but because the products are sold for double the prices available in Korea, the company is showing a strong profit.
Tour Les Jours' U.S. branch turned a profit for the first time among CJ Foodville's overseas operations in 2018 and it has been in the black for the last five consecutive years.
"It is CJ Group's keynote to expand its global business and CJ Foodville is planning to do so by establishing a local bakery factory in the United States. Other than our plan to build a factory there, nothing specific has been decided about it," a CJ Foodville official said.
Earlier, CJ Foodville sought to sell off its ownership of Tous Les Jours to improve its financial structure, but withdrew the plan. It was on the verge of a final contract with private equity fund Carlyle Group, but they did not find common ground on fixing the price for the bakery chain's sale.
Since then, Tous Les Jours has focused on expanding its bakery chain business in the United States. In 2018 alone, it opened bakery shops in 12 states and expanded the number to 21 as of this year.