DUBLIN, OHIO – The Wendy’s Co. entered three strategic development agreements to expand the brand in Central Asia over the next nine years. Wendy’s is collaborating with the owners of Kusto Group, and Global Investors Limited (Wissol Group) to accelerate growth in the region.

The partnership will expand Wendy’s presence in the region to a total of 65 restaurants across The Republic of Georgia, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan by 2030. Kusto Group and Wissol Group opened the first two Wendy’s restaurants in Kazakhstan in the historic center of Almaty earlier this year, along with a new drive-thru only restaurant in May located at a Wissol gas station in the Gelovani district of Tbilisi, Georgia.

“We’re excited to expand Wendy’s presence across the Central Asia Region with world-class, experienced franchisees that have strong operations experience, local development expertise and a proven track record for growing brands internationally,” said Abigail Pringle, president, International and chief development officer of The Wendy's Company. “Kusto Group and Wissol Group, and their owners and affiliates, share our values and passion for quality and exceptional customer service. 

“We firmly believe that our great-tasting, signature menu items — featuring made-to-order hamburgers, premium chicken sandwiches, fresh salads, fries, chili and Frosty desserts — will appeal to consumers who are looking for more options and high-quality food at a great price,” Pringle said.

Yerkin Tatishev, chairman of the board of directors of Kusto Group, said customers should expect high-quality, fresh products and ingredients.

“It is very important to our organization that menu items are prepared and sourced locally, working with farmers and suppliers in both Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan to deliver on Wendy’s elevated menu standards,” he said.

Wissol Group has been a Wendy’s franchisee since 2014 when the company opened the first Wendy’s restaurant in Georgia.

“We are thrilled to grow the Wendy’s brand in Georgia, and to partner with Kusto Group, and their owners and affiliates, to bring Wendy’s to Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan after making the brand a favorite restaurant in Georgia,” said Dr. Samson Pkhakadze, president of Wissol Group. “Wendy’s is a well-established, iconic global brand, and is known for quality. We have every confidence that the brand will also be successful and beloved by customers in the Central Asia Region.”