| Malaysia

Malaysia’s Bask Bear Coffee launches new ‘café-in-a-bank’ concept

The coffee chain has partnered with AmBank Group to open three café-in-a-bank outlets and plans to roll-out the concept across 50 AmBank branches nationwide

AmBank said an earlier pilot of the concept had already ‘yielded positive outcomes’ | Photo credit: Bask Bear Coffee


Selangor-based coffee chain Bask Bear Coffee has partnered with AmBank Group to launch its ‘café-in-a-bank’ concept across Malaysia. 

The first three ‘community banking’ stores have been opened within AmBank branches in the Klang Valley, Penang and Kedah, with both businesses trading side-by-side. 

A joint press release said AmBank customers could ‘enjoy the café-in-a-bank experience as they bank-in-a-café’.

Seeking to promote the idea of ‘relationship banking’, AmBank said an earlier pilot of the concept had already ‘yielded positive outcomes’, including higher customer footfall and stronger engagement with the branch. 

Bryan Loo, Founder and CEO of Loob Holding, which owns Bask Bear Coffee, said the unique collaboration is the ‘first such concept where a cosy café intertwines with a dynamic functioning bank branch’. 

Bask Bear Coffee and AmBank plan to scale the collaboration to 50 AmBank branches across Malaysia ‘in the near future’. 

The coffee chain, which opened its first store in October 2019, currently operates 70 outlets across Malaysia and is seeking to reach 100 stores nationwide by its third quarter of 2023. 

Loob Holding also operates Malaysian bubble tea chain Tealive, which has 800 stores across its native market and is seeking to reach 1,000 Tealive stores in the country by 2024. 

Although potentially unique in terms of partnering with a bank, the store-within-a-store concept is also being trialled by Malaysian coffee brands Café Mesra and ZUS Coffee

In January 2023, Malaysia’s Pos Malaysia commenced a collaboration with PetDag to launch the petrol station operator’s Café Mesra within three of its 600 post office outlets. 

The following month, Malaysia’s national post office announced a similar partnership with technology-focused ZUS Coffee, which it said would provide an ‘exciting in-store experience’ and advance its retail transformation strategy. 

World Coffee Portal research forecasts the Malaysian branded coffee shop market will reach 2,775 outlets by 2025.  

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