Loob Holdings Sdn Bhd, which owned Chatime bubble tea staple, has rebranded its 161 outlets to 'Tealive' and its expansion plan for the next two years is on track.

Loob's Chief Executive Officer, Bryan Loo, said with the exercise costing less than RM10 million, all its 161 outlets would be officially transformed into 'Tealive' from tomorrow.

"We also plan to increase the number of our outlets from 165 to 250 in Malaysia by 2018 as well as our customer base from 2.5 million a month to five million," he told reporters after the soft launch of Tealive here today.

Initially, Loob has 165 outlets, he said.

However, Loo said, 161 outlets would be operated under the new brand and the other four would not be rebranded.

Loo said the company would now focus its resources on moving forward in its growth story with its 1,000-strong workforce already serving two million customers each month.

On the global front, he said, Loob would tap the Vietnamese market in the third quarter of this year and other Asian countries in a couple of years.
"The company will set up five 'Tealive' outlets in Vietnam in the first year and subsequently it will open 20 in the second year," he said.

He said the company planned to expand its operations in more petrol stations nationwide, as well as light rail transit and mass rapid transit stations.

Loo said the company was unfazed by the dispute between La Kaffa International Co Ltd and Loob and was confident of winning back its customers.

"We are proud to launch 'Tealive', a brand that will make tea great again. It was six years ago that I operated the first kiosk to brew tea for Malaysians and now we will introduce a new tea culture to Malaysians," he said.

'Tealive' offers an introductory promotion of one-for-one, five hours a day for five days.

Anyone buying a 'Tealive' drink from 1pm to 6pm would get another drink free on Feb 18 till Feb 22, 2017.

He said the agreement between La Kaffa and Loob, which was to last until 2041, was terminated because of the Taiwanese firm's disagreement on the business direction of Chatime in Malaysia.

"Loob will also begin arbitration proceedings against La Kaffa in Singapore, and Loo said that he intended to claim for any damage the termination had caused his company.

Loo also said that all the ingredients used were halal and the products the company had been selling in the last six years were certified by the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia.

"We have the same team, the same employees and partners, in place at the same outlets but we expect consumers to find that we now have a different name, only better," he said. -- BERNAMA