Saigon Pete has carved a niche for itself as a source of quality Vietnamese food. Saigon Pete’s banh mi is famous throughout the city. It is important for Saigon Pete to capitalize on the momentum of growth and add to its fleet so as to expand business. The process must be completed in the short term to beat impending city laws that would make it difficult to obtain permits later. The transformation would make it possible for the owner, Pete Pham, to get back to his true love- focusing on food. To help out Pete and the overall process of expansion, I volunteer to handle the business side of Saigon Pete.
Saigon Pete has become a household name in the city for its authentic Vietnamese food. It is the only source of banh mi on wheels in the city. Over the last four years, Vietnamese food has increased in popularity because of increased numbers of immigrants. In response, a number of Vietnamese venues have set up shop. The popularity of banh mi is evident from the fact that three of the newly established Vietnamese venues serve banh mi exclusively. Two of the venues include banh mi in their lunch and takeout menus. The presence of banh mi on takeout menus indicates that there are people who would like to consume banh mi outside the restaurant framework, and also that there exists a section of potential customers who are unable to access Saigon Pete’s trucks through the day. In order to tap the unmet demand for consumers of banh mi in the city who wish to eat outside the restaurant framework, it is essential that Saigon Pete expand its fleet of trucks before any potential competitor spots the opportunity to enter the niche market of banh mi currently monopolized by Saigon Pete.
While it is established that there is a market for banh mi, it is instructive to analyze the pattern of revenues accrued by the three food trucks of Saigon Pete to determine exactly where new trucks should be deployed. The biggest revenues from all three trucks combined accrue during weekdays, ostensibly because of the working population that opts for takeaway Vietnamese food during lunch breaks. Lunch hours, accordingly, draw in the highest revenue from the areas serviced by the Uptown truck, ostensibly because most of the offices are located in the Uptown areas. Dinner revenues are the maximum from the Riverfront truck, because of the prevalence of revelers and tourists on the Riverfront. The revenue trends provide suitable clues for placing new trucks post expansion of Saigon Pete. It is proposed that more trucks be pressed into service in the Uptown region to capitalize on the demand from the working areas. At the same time, we need to work out other areas where revelers and tourists flock to at nighttime, so as to place additional trucks in suitable locations to enhance the dinner revenues. Given the fact that customers are gravitating towards social media to determine the location of Saigon Pete trucks, it may be worthwhile to incorporate a social media app to enable customers to locate our trucks faster and in a more seamless manner. The initiative by Saigon Pete in the social media arena is likely to be well received by clients, and should draw in a larger clientele, which in turn would further buttress the argument for more trucks.
The urgency necessitated in the proposed expansion of Saigon Pete’s fleet also emanates from the current misgivings about food trucks being voiced by restaurateurs, who contend that food trucks contribute to the burgeoning parking problems in the city and add to traffic woes because of large number of cars getting parked around the food trucks with clients alighting to buy food from the trucks. Pressure from the restaurateurs is likely to result in new regulations being imposed by the city, making it harder to get permits for food trucks. Therefore, the window of opportunity to apply for permits for food trucks for the expansion of Saigon Pete is now, before new restrictions on permits pass into law. Given Saigon Pete’s past history of contributing to the successful campaign of city councilor Roseanne Diaz, this may be the opportune time to capitalize, and persuade Roseanne Diaz to act in favor of Saigon Pete’s applications for permits for food trucks.
Aside from all business reasons to expand lies the overarching personal preference of the owner himself to be associated with the technical and gastronomical aspects of the business rather than being ensconced solely in the business administration facets. This preference of the CEO would find natural outlets in case Saigon Pete expands. It is highly possible for the owner to revert to be more involved in the actual running of two or three trucks on a hand-on basis. This would provide the new crew with the advantage of the wisdom and practical experience of the owner, which would be invaluable for growth.
While the owner would find his natural inclinations for fieldwork fulfilled once Saigon Pete expands its line of food trucks, it would be pertinent to note that there would be a resultant void in the business end of affairs. Currently, the owner is fully engaged in the business end of affairs. Once the owner is engaged on the technical side, there would be a need for someone else to step into the business end.
With my experience in the company and my good understanding of the nuances of the food truck business as proven over the years, I would consider it a privilege to step into the void created in the business end of Saigon Pete. I would request the owner to consider my request not as a means for self-promotion, but as a natural progression from running the Midtown business successfully. With my experience, I would be able to adroitly complement the technical efforts of the owner to achieve excellence in the food industry.
In summary, I would reiterate that this is the right time to consider expansion of Saigon Pete, given the increased popularity of our niche food item – the banh mi. We need to expand before we find new competitors recognizing the market need and stepping in. Our expansion needs to be urgent, given municipal tendencies to make it more difficult to obtain permits in future. We should consider bolstering the Uptown region, and identifying tourist circuits to enhance nighttime revenues. The owner would find professional satisfaction in moving to the technical side in sync with the expansion. I would be happy to lend my services at the business end to complement the owner’s efforts.