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Does Super Group Ltd’s Latest Experiment Make Sense?

Super Cafe 1

Super Group Ltd (SGX: S10) is trying new things again. Back in June, my colleagues and I visited Super Group’s factory in Malaysia and learnt about all the new initiatives the company’s busy with, one of which includes the company’s plan to enter the tea market.

But just a few weeks back, I managed to see in action a new experiment by the company.

The Super Café

Super Cafe 2

Welcome to the Super Café! A few weeks ago I stumbled across this café when doing my weekly grocery shopping. The café is located just outside a hypermarket in Malaysia. I believe the café was only a few days old when I first saw it.

Given that I had time to kill, I decided to sit down for a cuppa joe for “research” purposes. So let me run you through my findings.

Drinks from the Super Café are priced similarly to many boutique cafés – it is not as expensive as Starbucks but not as cheap as local coffee chains such as Ya Kun or Toastbox. That kind of price range is not exactly cheap, especially when considering the fact that Super Group’s brand of instant coffees (its staple business) can hardly be considered premium.

In terms of the environment, the store is cosy enough and is certainly a good place to have coffee. You have to place your orders at a counter, similar to most self-serviced cafés.

After a brief run-through of what the café is like, here’s where the problems begin.

There’s no value in the coffee

For the price that I had paid for the coffee, it wasn’t very good, despite me not being a coffee connoisseur. For the same amount of money, I could have enjoyed a well-brewed cup of coffee in a neighbouring boutique café by a barista trained from Melbourne. In Super Café, I ended up scalding my tongue with coffee brewed in boiling water (incidentally, boiling water shouldn’t be used to brew as it can burn the coffee!). The coffee also ended up tasting similar to the company’s instant coffee mixes.

super cafe 3

With room for improvement in the coffee section, I decided to turn to the pastries. The picture to the left is what I saw. I will let you come up with your own opinion on it but suffice to say that the pies could perhaps be presented in a much nicer way.

Foolish Take

So there you have it, my “research” findings on Super Group’s newest Super Café venture. Although I am sure this little experiment costs very little in comparison to the overall profits of the company, I was left rather disappointed with the execution of the whole concept. In my opinion, the company should have made the café good from the get-go, even if it’s just a small venture. My whole experience in the café thus far gives me the impression that Super Group is not that interested in that kind of business in the first place; if that is true, why even bother investing in this experiment at all?

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore contributor Stanley Lim owns Super Group.