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No Signboard Holdings inks exclusive master franchise deal for regional Korean fried chicken chain

FOOD and beverage operator No Signboard Holdings, historically known for its seafood outlets, has snagged an exclusive master franchise deal to sell Korean-style fried chicken in Singapore and Malaysia.

The arrangement with Haimarrow Food Service Co and HFS Global, announced on Monday, will give No Signboard the right to open eateries under the South Korea-based Mom's Touch Chicken and Burger brand.

No Signboard plans to open the first store in Malaysia in 2019 and will launch another seven more on either side of the Causeway within the first three years of the agreement - whether on its own or with suitable sub-franchisees.

Executive chairman and chief executive officer Sam Lim, who said in a media statement that the group is in a "growth phase", added: "Given our strong foundations and extensive network in the food and beverage sector in Singapore, we are very grateful that Haimarrow has entrusted us with the agreement to expand Mom's Touch in Singapore and Malaysia through sub-franchisees."

The rights last for 10 years from Jan 2, 2019 - or the opening date of the first restaurant, should that come earlier - with the option to renew the franchise for another decade after.

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The group said that the franchise agreement was in keeping with a long-term strategy of diversifying its restaurant portfolio. It is not expected to have any material impact on the group's net tangible assets or earnings per share for the year to Sept 30, the board disclosed in a separate announcement.

The Mom's Chicken move is the latest in an expansion spree at No Signboard, which debuted on the Catalist board in November 2017.

It said in June that it would consolidate its stake in Draft Denmark maker Danish Breweries.

That same month, the group inked a franchise agreement for hotpot chain Little Sheep, and unveiled plans for a quick service restaurant chain dishing up Asian burgers.

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