2 Mar 2013

Carl's Junior performance 'may outstrip KFC'

2:01 pm on 2 March 2013

Restaurant Brands believes the performance of its newest fast food chain, Carl's Junior, will eventually outstrip that of current star performer KFC.

The listed company, which also owns Pizza Hut and Starbucks, opened its third Carl's Junior restaurant on Auckland's Queen Street on Thursday, and will open to 10 new restaurants both this year and next year.

A separate business, part-owned by former All Black Michael Jones, already runs five Carl's Junior stores in Auckland and has the option to open three more sites in the city.

But Restaurant Brands chief executive Russell Creedy says they plan to open a total of 60 restaurants across the country over the next decade, and he believes the brand could become more popular than KFC.

Meanwhile, Andy Puzder, the global chief executive of Carl's Junior owner CKE Restaurant, was in Auckland on Thursday for the Queen Street restaurant opening.

He says, despite criticism that its food is unhealthy, he's proud that Carl's has opened in mostly lower socio-economic areas in Auckland.

"To people who really can't afford to go to a higher end restaurant you can get great quality food, you can get great service, you get it at fast food speed of service and you get it at a fast food price."

Mr Puzder says the brand has been well received in New Zealand, and he believes there is a lot of growth potential.