MIAMI, Jan 21, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Burger King Corp. (NYSE:BKC) today announced a new market entry with the opening of the first BURGER KING(R) restaurant in Moscow, Russia. This restaurant opening is part of the company's expansion strategy in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) operating region.
"We believe that our brand's entry into Russia exemplifies our company's commitment to diversifying our global restaurant portfolio and represents a milestone in our expansion strategy in the region," said John W. Chidsey, chairman and chief executive officer, Burger King Corp. "More than 80 percent of our net restaurant growth is realized in international markets and we are pleased with our new strategic market entry into Russia and its future expansion potential."
Burger King Europe GmbH signed an agreement with Burger Rus LLC. The managing shareholder of Burger Rus LLC is Alexander Kolobov, who successfully established the well known Russian coffee shop chain Shokoladnitsa. Together with his partners Oleg Gurkov and Mikhail Serdtsev, Kolobov will now bring the BURGER KING(R) brand's world famous flame-broiled beef burgers to Russia.
The first BURGER KING(R) restaurant in Russia is located in the Metropolis shopping mall in Moscow. A second BURGER KING(R) restaurant is scheduled to open later this month in Moscow's well-known "Europeysky" shopping center. Additional BURGER KING(R) restaurants are expected to open in the market throughout 2010 and beyond.
"Russia is an exciting, active market with a vibrant economy," said Kevin Higgins, president, EMEA, Burger King Corp. "We believe consumers in Russia will embrace the BURGER KING(R) menu of flame-grilled offerings, including the WHOPPER(R) sandwich, the brand's flagship product of more than 50 years."
"We are very excited to be a part of a leading global QSR brand and to develop the BURGER KING(R) business in Russia," Kolobov said. "The increasingly dynamic lifestyle in Russia makes us optimistic about the growth and expansion potential of the BURGER KING(R) brand in the market."
The BURGER KING(R) brand has expanded its presence throughout Central and Eastern Europe in the last five years with market entries into Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Bulgaria and Romania. The entry into the Russian market comes only weeks after the opening of the brand's 12,000th restaurant located in Joy City, Beijing, in December 2009.
Certain statements made in this press release that reflect management's expectations regarding future events are forward-looking in nature, including statements regarding the Company's expectations regarding its overall expansion and diversification strategy in the EMEA region, its ability to open more restaurants in Russia in 2010 and beyond; its beliefs and expectations regarding the growth potential of Russia as a market; and its belief that the Burger King brand and its menu of flame-grilled offerings will resonate with Russian consumers. These forward-looking statements are only predictions based on our current expectations and projections about future events. Important factors could cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements, including those risk factors set forth in our annual and quarterly reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the following: (i) our ability to compete internationally in an intensely competitive industry; (ii) our ability to successfully implement our international growth and development strategy; and (iii) risks related to our international operations.
Although we believe the expectations reflected in the forward-looking statements are reasonable, we cannot guarantee future results. Moreover, neither we nor any other person assumes responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of any of these forward-looking statements. You should not rely upon forward-looking statements as predictions of future events. We do not undertake any responsibility to update any of these forward-looking statements to conform our prior statements to actual results or revised expectations.
The BURGER KING(R) system operates more than 12,000 restaurants in all 50 states and in 73 countries and U.S. territories worldwide. Approximately 90 percent of BURGER KING(R) restaurants are owned and operated by independent franchisees, many of them family-owned operations that have been in business for decades. In 2008, Fortune magazine ranked Burger King Corp. among America's 1,000 largest corporations and Ad Week named it one of the top three industry-changing advertisers within the last three decades and it was recently recognized by Interbrand on its top 100 "Best Global Brands" list. In 2010, Standard & Poor's included shares of Burger King Holdings, Inc. to the S&P MidCap 400 index.
Burger Rus LLC founded in 2009 by Alexander Kolobov and his partners - Oleg Gurkov, Mikhail Serdtsev, and Dmitriy Medovoy who was appointed as Managing Director of the company - is a BURGER KING(R) franchisee in the market to develop and manage BURGER KING(R) restaurants in Russia. The first BURGER KING(R) restaurant located in the Metropolis shopping center opened in January 2010. Apart from Burger Rus LLC, Kolobov is also an owner of the famous Russian coffee shop chain Shokoladnitsa that has approximately 200 locations operating in Russia.
SOURCE: Burger King Corp.