A.Ayam relaunches in Bengkurong

Homegrown brand pivots to fast casual dining as it plans to franchise across Borneo

A.Ayam's fried chicken is cooked in a high pressure cooker in a process called broasting.

Homegrown fast food outlet A.Ayam have relaunched their sole outlet in Bengkurong with a revamped interior and menu as it looks to make a renewed push to open outlets in Brunei and wider Borneo.

The new menu adds fried or grilled sweet and savory chicken, tom yam, sweet buns and brewed coffee while maintaining overall affordability against other local fast food outlets. Together with a more modern interior, A.Ayam is pivoting towards establishing itself as a fast casual dining franchise.

A.Ayam was founded in 2002 by Florence See – who started the Liang Toon Group with her husband which includes a department store, Suci bottled water and a poultry farm – with a menu focusing on fried chicken.

After flourishing in its opening years, A.Ayam scaled to four outlets nationwide, but the eatery failed to sustain its initial momentum and eventually closed all but their Bengkurong branch.

Last year, See’s son Marcus T.P Tan helped strategize a “comprehensive rebranding” for A.Ayam to reach out to a new, younger audience while developing a framework and standard operating procedures that would enable the business to be franchised regionally.

“I believe in our combination of quality and value. However, it has been a while since we marketed aggressively and we needed to re-look at the business strategically; where and what is it now and where do we want it to go (in the future)?” said Tan.

A.Ayam received interest to expand to Sabah after attending its International Food & Beverage Fair last year and will join the Sarawak Timber & SMEs Expo in Kuching next week. Tan says they are also in discussions to open at shopping centre Emart who have seven locations in Sarawak.

“In terms of the logistics and the taste of customers, expanding to Sabah and Sarawak makes the most sense,” he added.