LOUISVILLE, Ky.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE: YUM) announces the grand opening of the first Taco Bell in India by its international division, Yum! Restaurants International (YRI). Yum! is the leading restaurant company in India with its KFC and Pizza Hut brands. The introduction of the first Taco Bell in India reflects the Company's strategy of creating a third global brand.
"We're delighted to be offering Taco Bell to consumers in India, a key growth market in our global portfolio," said Graham Allan, president, Yum! Restaurants International. "Based on customer feedback so far, we expect it will become extremely popular, just as it is in the United States. The Mexican-style food is perfect for the Indian taste palate and we will be offering a variety of vegetarian meals as well so that everyone can enjoy it."
Yum!'s new Taco Bell international restaurant, located in Bangalore, India, is the country's first experience with the Mexican-inspired quick-service restaurant brand. Taco Bell's "Think Outside the Bun" positioning and brand essence is expected to resonate extremely well with India's young population. The new Taco Bell India menu features tacos, burritos, nachos, quesadillas and Crunchwraps, including spicier products tailored to the Indian market. The menu offers breakthrough value priced items starting at 35 cents. In addition, fifty percent of the menu features a vegetarian range of products specially created for Indian consumers including potato paneer burritos and crunchy potato tacos, among others.
"We are confident that Taco Bell will redefine the eating-out market in India with incredible taste catering to many consumer segments, day parts and occasions at an unmatched price," said Niren Chaudhary, managing director, Yum! Restaurants International India. "We are excited to be opening the first Taco Bell in India and we plan to expand it nationally as an incredibly vibrant and youthful brand."
Yum! Brands is focused on developing Taco Bell into its third global brand after KFC and Pizza Hut. Taco Bell is the second most profitable brand in the United States. Over the past few years, the Company has expanded Taco Bell beyond Canada and Puerto Rico to other markets including Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama, Dominican Republic, Guam, Iceland, Philippines, Dubai, Spain and Cyprus. Yum! is optimistic about the long-term potential of growing Taco Bell internationally. As of year-end 2009, there are more than 250 Taco Bell restaurants outside of the United States.
India is a key growth market for Yum! Brands due to its extremely young and large population of 1.1 billion people, growing middle class and emerging economy. Over the past 12 years, Yum! has become the largest and fastest growing restaurant company in India by successfully developing a strong infrastructure, highly-skilled workforce focused on providing outstanding customer service and innovative, localized menus offering value options. By 2015, the Company expects to have at least 1,000 restaurants in India, up from 230 restaurants as of year-end 2009.
KFC is the fastest growing quick-service restaurant brand in India with 72 restaurants in 13 cities as of year-end 2009. Yum! opened 27 new KFC restaurants in India in 2009, which is among the highest number of store openings in the country's quick-service restaurant industry. KFC is a young, vibrant brand in India from its contemporary restaurant designs featuring bold colors, open seating areas for large groups and flat-panel televisions to innovative marketing programs to unique signature products, including vegetarian items. Last year, the Company opened its first KFC Krushers beverage bar and store design in India highlighting YRI's popular new line of yogurt and fruit smoothies, dairy-based and soda-based drinks and teas.
Pizza Hut has been named the "Most Trusted Food Service Brand" in India for the fifth year by The Economic Times (India), ahead of all other Indian and global brands, demonstrating its popularity in the country. As of year-end 2009, there are 158 Pizza Huts in 34 cities offering a range of localized products including masala pizza, chicken tikka appetizers and spicy Indian drinks.
YRI is the largest division of Yum! Brands with more than 13,000 restaurants outside the U.S. and China Division. One of Yum! Brands' four key business strategies is to drive aggressive international expansion and build strong brands everywhere. In 2009, operating profit for YRI was $491 million. The year 2009 also marked the tenth year that YRI has opened more than 700 new restaurants outside the U.S. and China.
Yum! Brands, Inc., based in Louisville, Ky., is the world's largest restaurant company in terms of system restaurants with more than 37,000 restaurants in more than 110 countries and territories. The company is ranked #239 on the Fortune 500 List, with revenues of nearly $11 billion in 2009. Four of the company's restaurant brands - KFC, Pizza Hut, Long John Silver's and Taco Bell - are the global leaders of the chicken, quick-service seafood, pizza and Mexican-style food categories. A&W Restaurants is the longest running quick-service franchise chain in America. Outside the United States, Yum! Brands system opened more than four new restaurants each day of the year, making it a leader in international retail development.