《TAIPEI TIMES》 Wowprime beats minimum wage in offer to entry staff
An undated photograph shows employees from Wowprime Corp’s various restaurant chains. Photo courtesy of Wowprime Corp
By Chen Cheng-hui / Staff reporter
Restaurant chain operator Wowprime Corp （王品集團） yesterday announced that it would raise the entry wage for its full-time staff by 3.45 percent to NT$30,000 （US$1,038） per month next year — NT$6,000 more than the nation’s minimum monthly wage of NT$24,000 — as the company moves to recruit and retain talent while Taiwan gradually shakes off the COVID-19 downturn.
Wowprime said it would also raise its minimum hourly wage from NT$163 to NT$170 for part-time workers, which would also be 6.25 percent higher than the nation’s minimum hourly wage of NT$160.
The increases are to take effect on Jan. 1, it said.
They would make Wowprime, which operates 408 restaurants under 21 brands in Taiwan and China, the nation’s first restaurant operator to increase wages for workers.
The changes are estimated to benefit 1,300 full-time employees and 4,000 part-time staff, said Wowprime, whose brands include the Wang Steak （王品台塑牛排） and Tasty （西堤） restaurants, Japanese eatery Tokiya （陶板屋） and hotpot restaurant chain 12 Sabu （石二鍋）.
Thanks to Taiwan keeping its COVID-19 outbreak under control and the company’s sales promotions, Wowprime’s monthly revenue began to show positive annual growth in May, with cumulative revenue rising 3.35 percent to NT$7.69 billion in the first nine months of this year.
The company’s Chinese operations also began to see their revenue losses dwindle in March, although its combined revenue in the nine-month period was still 35.87 percent lower than a year earlier at NT$3.2 billion.
Overall, Wowprime’s consolidated revenue from January to September totaled NT$10.89 billion, down 12.41 percent from a year earlier, company data showed.
The company said that it is cautiously optimistic about the fourth quarter and future revenue growth, and would recruit talent for middle and high-level positions as it embarks on an aggressive restaurant expansion plan in Taiwan next year.