DENVER – Smashburger is partnering with international restaurateur Richard Eisenberg and his company, QSR International, to expand the brand into Latin America. Eisenberg’s franchise commitment of 18 restaurants will put Smashburger restaurants in Central and South America and the Caribbean.

This year the company expects to open its first Latin America locations in Costa Rica and is soliciting franchise partners throughout Latin America. New Smashburger locations in Latin America are scheduled to open in the next several years.

This Latin American initiative marks the third international market for Smashburger, following expansion announcements for Canada and the Middle East.

Eisenberg, who is former general manager and executive director of YUM! Brands Central America, Caribbean and Northern Latin America, has orchestrated 169 new restaurant openings in 16 countries in four years for KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell. As co-founder and president of QSR International, he and his team have initiated 120 restaurant openings in 13 countries for KFC, Quiznos and Teriyaki Experience.

Smashburger will continue serving localized menus for its diners in Latin America by adding locally inspired burgers developed specifically for area residents. Costa Rica’s regional burger will be announced at the time of the restaurant’s opening.