The Costa Rica News (TCRN) – The number of restaurants in the country has been growing at an increasing pace for about three years, forcing entrepreneurs to hone their strategies to attract more people.

If you add up the number of restaurants that finished its construction between 2010 and October 2013, according to the Association of Engineers and Architects (CFIA), there have been over 500 locations built across the country.

The increase has taken place in all areas. According to Income Tax Office, there are eight categories within the industry, such as restaurants, bars and sodas, all of which had the greatest growth (63.4%) in this period.

However, it should be clarified that a single legal entity may have several partner restaurants besides declaring for sales tax.

When analyzing the sales tax filers, data also shows an increase in the amount of 16.5%. The most reported earnings (income tax) are in the category of restaurants that also report more sales.

The growth in both tax declarations in sales, indicate not only a growing number of new brands, but also the amount of locations.

Manuel Burgos, president of the Costa Rican Chamber of Restaurants (caCORE), found that the increase was due to large profits from years past where many people entered the market seeking profits, until it began to saturate and stop losses for many.

However, after four years of construction boom in restaurants, the figures indicate a decrease after 2013.

Restaurants that do not belong to a chain could be experiencing this more marked slowdown, as they have less room to compete on price.

The Subway chain is the one with the largest number of stores in Costa Rica (56), followed by Pizza Hut and McDonald’s, however, last week McDonald’s announced the construction of three additional locations.

The latest Consumer Profile EF, published last September, revealed that for 67% of Costa Ricans, the most important factor when deciding where to eat is the price.

The Costa Rica News (TCRN)

San Jose Costa Rica