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The Story of the Man Behind Our Beloved Takeaway French Fries

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Most Filipinos can recall eating flavored fries as a snack from various kiosks in their neighborhoods as children. Perhaps this desire arose from the Philippines’ Westernization as a result of foreign corporations entering the country and providing American-style dishes like burgers and fries. Instead of competing with these much larger firms with the same goods, a local entrepreneur saw a chance for success and devised a concept with potatoes being the main star of the business.

Starting off as a dishwasher at Wendy’s and working his way up to become a district manager before opening his own Potato Corner kiosk in 1992, Jose Magsaysay, Jr. is best known for founding the flavored fries franchise and shepherding its phenomenal growth from the beginning: Potato Corner grew from one small food cart in 1992 to 70 stores in 1994, 120 stores in 1997, and 1,100 stores in the Philippines with 200 stores overseas.

Mr. Magsaysay has received multiple honors for his entrepreneurial acumen, including induction into the Franchise Excellence Hall of Fame in 2003, the MVP Bossing Award in 2011, the Entrepreneur Award of the Year in 2016, and the 2019 AIM Triple-A Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award.

Potato Corner has won various honors over the years, largely for its great business model and well-known brand. It was awarded the Franchise Excellence Hall of Fame Award by the Philippine Franchise Association and the Department of Trade and Industry in 2003, as well as Best Franchise of the Year for three consecutive years and the Global Franchise Award by the same organization. Potato Corner is a beloved brand among children and the young at heart, as well as a successful commercial venture for entrepreneurs.

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