Restaurant chains have eyes for overseas markets

by Meat&Poultry Staff
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MIAMI and MINNEAPOLIS — Pollo Tropical and Buffalo Wild Wings recently announced initiatives to expand in overseas markets.

Miami-based Pollo Tropical signed a franchise development agreement to bring 10 franchises to northern India. The deal marks the company's first outside the Western Hemisphere. Delhi-based Paramount Cuisines Pvt. Ltd. committed to open a minimum of 10 Pollo Tropical locations in the National Capital Region, Punjab, Chandigarh, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh between 2013 and 2016, according to Pollo Tropical. Paramount Cuisines is a subsidiary of Paramount Group, a private ISO 9001:2008-certified company. Pollo Tropical plans to award additional franchises in other regions in India.

“It became apparent very quickly that this was a great fit,” said Marc Mushkin, senior vice president of International Development for Pollo Tropical. “Our fresh, marinated grilled chicken is a natural for India, and will enhance our already-strong vegetarian options to expand our appeal. The brand already has years of experience with Indian preferences in its Trinidad franchise, where South Asian immigrants comprise more than 30 percent of the population.”

Buffalo Wild Wings continued its international expansion with an agreement to open restaurants in the Middle East and Puerto Rico. Buffalo Wild Wings signed an agreement with the Olayan Group to develop 22 units. The Olayan Group is an international business and restaurant operator in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region with headquarters in Saudi Arabia. The agreement includes locations in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and options for four additional Middle Eastern countries over the next six years.

Olayan Group also signed an agreement with Sunshine Restaurant Corp., an existing Buffalo Wild Wings franchisee, which calls for four locations in Puerto Rico by the end of 2016. The first restaurants are expected to open in 2013. The agreements mark the first overseas expansion for the company.

“We spend a great deal of time learning about the countries, cultures and potential partners as we enter new markets,” said Mo Sawda, Buffalo Wild Wings managing director, international. “We are pleased to be working with two well-known, well-respected and successful developers in this new expansion.”

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