CARPINTERIA, Calif. (BUSINESS WIRE) -- CKE Restaurants, Inc.(NYSE: CKR) today announced the signing of an exclusive development agreement with the Mesa Group to open 25 Carl's Jr.(R) restaurants in Vietnam. The Mesa Group has been granted the development rights to open Carl's Jr. restaurants throughout the country with the first Carl's Jr. restaurant scheduled to open in Ho Chi Minh City in April 2010.
Mesa Group has operated a range of successful businesses in Vietnam, including distribution, food & beverage, media and real estate development.
The 25 restaurant development deal is part of a greater development plan that CKE Restaurants has for the Asia region. In 2009, CKE Restaurants signed a development agreement with Star Food F&B Management Co. Ltd. to open Carl's Jr. restaurants in Shanghai and Beijing. Currently, CKE Restaurants is actively seeking to expand its presence throughout China and Southeast Asia. CKE currently operates Carl's Jr. restaurants in China, Singapore and Malaysia and American Samoa. Additional franchise deals in the region are also planned.
"We are very pleased to welcome Mesa Group Inc. as a part of the CKE team of operators," said Andy Puzder, CEO of CKE Restaurants, Inc. "Mesa's expertise and knowledge of the Vietnamese market, along with their extensive experience in supply chain management, distribution, and real estate, make Mesa Group the perfect partner to bring Carl's Jr. to Vietnam. The Carl's Jr. brand has a loyal following in Asia and we couldn't be more pleased than to introduce our great-tasting, premium, charbroiled burgers to the people of Vietnam."
"We are very excited to launch Carl's Jr. in Vietnam with our great partner CKE Restaurants," said Ms. Luu Tuyet Mai, CEO of Mesa Group. "We are determined to make Carl's Jr. the leading quick-service restaurant brand in Vietnam by providing premium, high quality menu items, premium facilities, and exceptional customer service. We have aggressive growth plans for Vietnam with plans to open Carl's Jr. in major cities over the next few years and pride ourselves in making Carl's Jr. the destination of choice for consumers."
Currently, CKE Restaurants franchises 340 international restaurants between both its Carl's Jr. and Hardee's(R) brands. The company has strategic development plans to double its International presence within the next five years.
Headquartered in Carpinteria, Calif., CKE Restaurants, Inc. is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "CKR." As of the end of its fiscal 2010 third quarter, CKE Restaurants, Inc., through its subsidiaries, had a total of 3,147 franchised, licensed or company-operated restaurants in 42 states and in 14 countries, including 1,221 Carl's Jr. restaurants and 1,913 Hardee's restaurants. For more information about CKE Restaurants, please visit www.ckr.com or www.carlsjr.com. Carl's Jr. social media sites include www.facebook.com/carlsjr, www.twitter.com/carlsjr, and www.youtube.com/carlsjr.
MESA was founded in 1991 as a distribution company in Vietnam, and has since expanded into food and beverage, media, and real estate development. MESA has over 1,500 employees with offices throughout Vietnam, and is ranked in the top 100 private and public companies. MESA has the largest distribution infrastructure and operations in the country, a high growth food and beverage business, a well-known and high quality media operation, and a large and attractive real estate development portfolio.
SOURCE: CKE Restaurants, Inc