STORE SPACES

Popeyes will bring southern cooking to the Far East

BY Dan Berthiaume

Quick-service chain Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen Inc. is making a major move into China.

Popeyes has entered into an agreement with TFI TAB Food Investments, a quick-service operator in China and Turkey, to develop and open more than 1,500 Popeyes restaurants in the People’s Republic of China over the next 10 years.

“We’re very excited to grow the Popeyes brand in the Chinese market,” said Josh Kobza, COO of Restaurant Brands International (RBI), parent company of Popeyes. “We look forward to bringing our great tasting chicken, biscuits, sides and beautiful new restaurants to our guests in China with our partner, TFI.”

Popeyes is the last of RBI’s three major quick-service brands to expand into China. Its other two brands, Burger King and Tim Horton’s, both have an established presence there. In May, RBI said it plans to grow from its current total of approximately 26,000 restaurants to more than 40,000 locations globally during the next eight to 10 years. This would make the company one of the largest restaurant brands in the world.

The Popeyes system operates over 3,100 locations in more than 25 countries worldwide, including the U.S. and Canada. Of RBI’s three brands, Burger King is the largest, with some 18,000 locations in more than 100 countries. Tim Hortons has more than 4,800 systemwide restaurants located in Canada, the United States and around the globe.

The commencement of Popeyes’ operations in China is subject to a regulatory filing in China.

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