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A fan of Rufo's Famous Tapa becomes its president

A love affair with Rufo’s: Rufo’s Famous Tapa’s owner and president Paul Reyes says, “Our customers love our rich, sweet sauce as much as they love the tapa.”

MANILA, Philippines - Paul Izon Reyes is overwhelmed with nostalgia every time he talks about Rufo’s Famous Tapa (or simply Rufo’s). As a student at the Intenational School Manila, he used to frequent Rufo’s maiden branch in Makati City located right in front of the campus.

“Looking back, Rufo’s then was a hole-in-the-wall tapsihan but there was a coolness factor and appeal to it,” Paul says. “It was located on Salamanca and Kalayaan Streets and for someone young, restless and tired of being stuck inside the tightly guarded campus, chillin’ at Rufo’s meant magic and freedom.

“I came back after working in the US because I realized how trapped I was in the rat race,” he continues. “The entrepreneur in me knew that if I wanted to succeed, I had to be free. Business is all about financial freedom.”

By serendipitous luck, Rufo’s was being sold at the time he came back to the Philippines. “I loved the food, I grew up with the brand; that’s why I wanted it.”

In 2003, Paul finally acquired Rufo’s, became its president and now he could not be more happy.

Rufo’s is undergoing aggressive expansion under Paul’s management. He recently opened it to franchising through Rufo’s Famous Franchise Corporation (RufoCorp). Construction is in full swing for new branches in SouthPark Highs in Las Piñas, A.Venue in Makati, Saint Benilde in Vito Cruz, Blue Wave in Macapagal, Pasay, and at the SM Makati Food Court, which will launch within the next three months.

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Currently, Rufo’s has branches on Kalayaan Ave., Makati City, Shaw Blvd. and most recently in Eastwood City and Pearl Plaza in Ortigas Center.   Paul projects to have 15 branches before the year ends. The company has also partnered with Francorp, the World Leader in Franchise Consultancy. He likewise tapped into PSBank’s supportive SME programs as he plans to more than double the current number of stores by end of 2013.

“With a recently set-up marketing system, hands-on mentorship, excellent products and a strong brand, Rufo’s is the perfect low-risk, fast-earning franchise,” Paul says. 

It is easy to operate a Rufo’s franchise as all products are prepared and packed in the Rufo’s Central Commissary. Through his business, Paul plans to create and give value to others by serving excellent products 24/7 to customers, better opportunities for his employees and suppliers and teaching financial freedom to Rufo’s franchisees.

“I have always believed that the formula for a good business is about ‘doing the right things, not just in doing things right.’ That, for me, is the secret to success,” shares Paul. “Our customers love our rich, sweet sauce as much as they love the tapa. We serve affordable, freshly cooked ‘real’ food that Filipinos eat any time of the day, every day. ” 

For inquiries, call 477-6652, 532-6335 or 533-1446 and look for Lala Alcantara or Ella Rompe. You may also visit their website at

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