CKE opens first Carl's Jr. in Panamá

by Bryan Salvage
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CARPINTERIA, Calif. – CKE Restaurants Inc. has opened its first Carl’s Jr. restaurant in Panamá at the Tocumen Panamá International Airport in Panamá City. This restaurant is operated by International Meal Company Caribbean and Central America, a wholly owned subsidiary of International Meal Corporation SA, which is the largest retail food concessionaire and multi-brand casual dining chain in Brazil with operations in Mexico, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic and Panamá.

Counting its Panamá opening, CKE now licenses Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s restaurants in 20 countries.

“We are very excited to have International Meal Company Caribbean and Central America as a part of the CKE team,” said Andrew Puzder, CEO of CKE Restaurants. “Latin America is a critical component of our international expansion goals and the premium hamburgers offered at Carl’s Jr. will be a perfect fit in these markets. We currently have a very strong presence in Mexico and are well positioned for further expansion in Latin America.”

CKE currently franchises 365 international restaurants between both its Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s brands. As of the end of fiscal 2011, CKE Restaurants Inc., through its subsidiaries, had a total of 3,159 franchised, licensed or company-operated restaurants in 42 states and in 20 countries, including 1,249 Carl's Jr. restaurants and 1,899 Hardee's restaurants.

International Meal Company Holdings SA is the largest retail food concessionaire in Latin America, operating more than 200 casual dining and fast-food restaurants in Brazil, México, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic and Panamá.
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