Two leading restaurant chains, Sizzler and McDonald's, are expanding to broaden their customer base and increase the frequency of customer traffic.
Anirute David Collins, general manager of SLRT Co, the operator of Sizzler steakhouse, said the company will open a Sizzler restaurant under the "Steak Lab" concept on Koh Samui on Dec 16.
This will be the first Sizzler restaurant to offer a selection of alcoholic beverages to customers, he said.
Spanning 300 square metres and equipped with an open kitchen to display its culinary expertise, the restaurant accommodates 100 guests, said Mr Collins.
"Sizzler's Samui branch aims to attract a younger demographic, with 50% of its clientele consisting of tourists, in contrast to the existing branches where up to 80% of customers are locals," he said. "This new branch serves as a learning ground for us to understand and engage more effectively with tourist customers in the future."
SLRT also plans to launch a new Sizzler branch at Central WestVille within two months, following the opening of a branch in the Ramintra neighbourhood earlier this year.
The company intends to renovate 5-6 restaurants and open three new Sizzler outlets next year, targeting 66 total branches by 2024.
The steak restaurant industry in Thailand is valued at 9 billion baht and posts consistent annual growth. The premium steak restaurant segment averages 4-5% growth per year.
"The steak market is very competitive. We've always tried to offer customers unconventional dishes, including signatures of each Western country next year," said Mr Collins.
"This is to lure existing customers to come more often, as well as to recruit more customers aged 16-30."
In addition to introducing new main courses and regularly updating the salad bar choices, Sizzler is committed to maintaining a loyal customer base by offering exclusive benefits through its "E-Member" loyalty programme, which has membership of more than 400,000, he said.
The chain also focuses on adapting the ambience of its outlets to suit different festive occasions, said Mr Collins.
Sizzler recently introduced three new steak dishes to coincide with the holiday season, further contributing to its growth during peak times, he said.
Patchneewan Tanprawat, chief marketing officer of McThai Co, the operator of McDonald's, said the company plans to allocate 500 million baht to renovate and open 10 new McDonald's stores next year, primarily focusing on standalone outlets offering drive-thru, dine-in and delivery services.
McDonald's is scheduled to introduce two new restaurant concepts in March next year, designed to provide novel experiences for families and the younger demographic.
This year, the company plans to open a total of six branches, with the final one scheduled to open on Walking Street in Pattaya.
Recently the company unveiled the "Next Gen Burger" featuring a fully baked, soft golden brown bun -- a significant update for the first time in several decades, she said.
Improvements in the grilling process have been made to ensure tastier patties, said Ms Patchneewan.
The Next Gen Burger has proven popular in the US, Australia and several Asian markets including South Korea, Hong Kong and Singapore, she said.