Five years after his arrival in South Africa, Thai national Chai Lekcharoensuk walked into a Thai restaurant in Johannesburg to sample the local take on Thai cuisine. Disappointed with the meal, which hardly tasted like real Thai food, he became inspired to introduce South Africa to a more upmarket take on Thai dining, opening the first Wang Thai Royal Thai Cuisine restaurant on Cape Town’s Foreshore in 1993.
Wang Thai’s combination of sophisticated elegance, royal Thai chefs and delicate spicy food was adored by locals and tourists alike, which lead Chai to further develop the Wang Thai restaurant group in the Cape Peninsula and at a later stage in Johannesburg and Pretoria as well.
Having established an enviable reputation in the fine dining sector of the restaurant market, Chai saw the opportunity to open a second, more mainstream Thai restaurant chain, which would combine the authenticity and flavour of Wang Thai with the convenience and simplicity of a European noodle bar.
Ten years later with his vision still in mind, Chai opened the first Simply Asia Thai Food & Noodle Bar – a fresh, tasty and affordable alternative for diners looking to broaden their horizons with more exotic and authentic cuisine.
And so Simply Asia was born.
To prove that the concept worked and was not simply a passing fad, to date 13 company-owned Simply Asia stores were opened in Cape Town and Gauteng between 2003 and 2017. The success of the initiative led to all of these stores being converted to franchises.
We are currently the leading role player in the Thai restaurant industry in South Africa, and aim to rapidly develop consumer brand awareness and increase our customer base.
With over 50 stores throughout the Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal, our growing national presence and award-winning cuisine, it’s no wonder we’re South Africa’s favourite Thai food restaurant.
We pride ourselves in having a Central Kitchen that produces all our secret sauces and other core items from products imported directly from Thailand for exclusive use by the Cape Thai Holdings restaurant group (Simply Asia).
The combination of high quality product, superior supply chain support, along with our adherence to the strictest hygiene standards ensures that our chefs have the finest, freshest ingredients possible in order to deliver only the best quality products to our customers.
Our Central Kitchen is Certified Halaal with ICSA (Certificate number for 2013: 2042).
The Simply Asia franchisor has a support structure in place to assist the franchisee in both the operations and the marketing of their business. We offer franchisees regular updates and advice on how to make their business run more smoothly and efficiently. Specialised labour is also taken care of with the use of authentic Thai chefs being employed and managed by the franchisor.
We provide intensive training for all of our new franchisees, which encompasses practical on-the-job and theoretical training. This training will incorporate many elements, most of which is outlined in the Operations Manual and is the basis of your day-to-day management tasks.
The training provided is extensive and sufficiently comprehensive to ensure that a new franchisee is familiar with every aspect of the business prior to opening and includes the following:
• Safety and security
• Cleaning and hygiene
• Restaurant maintenance
• Industrial relations
• Product preparation and presentation
• Inventory management
• General business and financial management
• Customer care
Ideal attributes of a Simply Asia franchisee:
• Previous business management experience
• People orientated with excellent interpersonal and communication skills
• Ability to motivate staff and build customer relations
• Energetic self-starter with the knowledge and ability to maintain high standards
• Entrepreneurial acumen with an ability and willingness to work collaboratively
1st Franchise Opened
No. of Outlets
Average set-up cost
Initial franchise fee
Initial Working Capital
Minimum owners contribution
Management services fee
Initial agreement term
Fill in the form below and we will get back to you shortly.