McDonald's to start franchising in Russia

by Staff
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MOSCOW – Although there are already 314 McDonald’s restaurants in Russia, McDonald's Corp has announced it will offer franchise restaurants in Russia for the first time. McDonald’s has selected the sector's largest restaurant holding company Rosinter as its partner in the fast-growing Russian market, according to Reuters.

McDonald's, which first opened in Moscow in 1990, before the collapse of the Soviet Union, currently has 314 self-operated stores in Russia. The agreement with Rosinter to bring franchise stores to Russia is aimed at “growth and expansion,” said Khamzat Khasbulatov, McDonald's Russia president.

“If this model proves successful, we will start to spread it around. We are looking at a long-term perspective,” Khasbulatov told Reuters.

As a part of this test project, Rosinter will open McDonald's restaurants in airports and railway stations, Khasbulatov said.

There are a number of other popular US-based restaurant chains already in Russia. Rosinter already operates the T.G.I. Friday franchise in Russia. US sandwich chain Quiznos recently announced a partnership with local franchisee QRL in March and said it would open more than 20 locations by 2014.

Wendy's/Arby's opened its first Russian restaurant last June in partnership with Russian company Wenrus, while Burger King entered the market in 2010. Subway restaurants has announced plans to expand its Russian network to 1,000 outlets by 2015.

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