Filipino fried chicken chain Jollibee to open Norwich branch

Filipino fast food chain Jollibee is opening a Norwich restaurant. 

Filipino fast food chain Jollibee is opening a Norwich restaurant. - Credit: Nic Crilly-Hargrave Photography

Fast food giant Jollibee is set to bring its famous fried chicken to the fine city, with plans for a Norwich restaurant in the pipeline. 

Jollibee was founded in 1978 in the Philippines and now has 1,478 branches across the globe, which is set to rise with a £30 million expansion plan announced for the UK. 

The menu is described on the Jollibee website as "a joyous mashup of western comfort food with a Southeast Asian twist".

Jollibee's signature dish is its Chickenjoy fried chicken. 

Jollibee's signature dish is its Chickenjoy fried chicken. - Credit: Nic Crilly-Hargrave Photography

This includes its signature Chickenjoy fried chicken and Jolly Spaghetti, which is sweet with Jollibee's signature sauce loaded with hot dog pieces and grated cheese.

It is the largest fast food chain in the Philippines and the first British branch opened in London's Earl's Court in 2018, with over half a million pieces of chicken sold in the first fortnight. 

New restaurants opened in Liverpool and Leicester in 2020 and the brand has announced plans for 50 stores in Europe by 2025.

There are plans for 50 Jollibee restaurants across Europe by 2025. 

There are plans for 50 Jollibee restaurants across Europe by 2025. - Credit: Nic Crilly-Hargrave Photography

The company is investing £50 million across the continent, with £30 million in the UK alone, and this includes plans for a Norwich shop in 2022 and bosses are currently looking for the right site in the city. 

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Other UK locations include Leicester Square in London, Manchester and Reading. 

Dennis Flores, president of Jollibee Europe, Middle East, Asia and Australia, said: “Jollibee is dedicated to growing the brand here in the UK and across Europe.

"Investing £50 million proves our commitment to become a major player in Europe's quick service industry.

Jollibee tropical chicken burger. 

Jollibee tropical chicken burger. - Credit: Nic Crilly-Hargrave Photography

"We adapted our approach to appeal to a young British demographic which meant building a premium, inviting space with a touch of our distinctive heritage.

"The pandemic may have been a setback, but it will not deter us from pursuing our vision for Jollibee in the UK and the rest of Europe.”

Jollibee was started in 1978 by Tony Tan Caktiong, the son of Chinese immigrants, in the Philippines.

The business began as an ice cream store and he later expanded its offering with hot food.

Parent company the Jollibee Group has over 5,800 stores globally, which also includes Chowking in the Philippines and Smashburger in America.