DENVER, CO--(Marketwire - Oct 17, 2011) - Spicy Pickle Franchising, Inc. (OTCQB: SPKL) (PINKSHEETS: SPKL), the Denver-based fast-casual franchising company, announced today that it has entered into a binding letter of intent with a new franchisee and developer for seven new Spicy Pickle® Sandwich Company locations in the State of Qatar. Representing the company's first foray into the booming Middle East nation, the first Spicy Pickle location in Doha, Qatar is scheduled to open for business in April 2012.
"We are very fortunate to have found really great partners to launch our Middle East expansion plan," said Mark Laramie, Spicy Pickle's Chief Executive Officer. We have been working diligently for the last year preparing for this exciting growth opportunity. This part of the Middle East, particularly Doha, Qatar, is a great place for Spicy Pickle expansion, and we expect our development there to accelerate existing interest in the surrounding region.
"Although expanding internationally can be challenging, our management team has years of international restaurant franchising experience with various fast casual restaurant brands. We have expanded brands like this before, and we are confident in our ability to execute our plan effectively. It is an important development step for Spicy Pickle."
To date, the parties have entered into a binding letter of agreement with plans to finalize a formal development agreement by the end of the month. "We couldn't be happier with our new partners in Qatar, and are eager to open our first unit in Doha in Spring 2012," said Peter Wright, Chief Development Officer for Spicy Pickle. The principals of Food Fabulous, WLL, Salma Maher and Hanan El Basha, the new Spicy Pickle Sandwich Company franchise developers, are residents of Qatar and know the nation well. "With the ongoing surge in growth in the State and the awarding of the 2022 FIFA World Cup, Qatar's consumer outlook remains positive over the next ten years. Many believe Qatar could challenge the UAE (especially Dubai) as the Gulf region's most exciting consumer market," said Ms. Maher. Furthermore, "Qatar, the wealthiest state in the Gulf region in terms of per capita GDP, has made great progress in the food and beverage sector, and continues to create great opportunities for entrepreneurs," added Ms. El Basha. "We have much to be excited about with this new partnership," concluded Mr. Laramie.
For information about franchise and development opportunities and for other additional information about Spicy Pickle, please visit www.spicypickle.com or contact Peter Wright, Chief Development Officer, at 303-961-2533.
Founded in 1999, Spicy Pickle Franchising, Inc. (OTCQB: SPKL) (PINKSHEETS: SPKL) franchises and operates both the Spicy Pickle® Sandwich Company and BG Urban(SM) brands. Spicy Pickle Sandwich Company restaurants serve high quality meats and fine artisan breads baked fresh daily, along with a wide choice of eight cheeses, 22 toppings, and 14 proprietary spreads to create healthy, delicious panini and sub sandwiches with flavors from around the world. As a leading "fast-casual" concept, Spicy Pickle restaurants offer menu items that are far beyond traditional fast food without the price points of casual dining. The hallmark of a Spicy Pickle restaurant is great food and quality service in an enjoyable atmosphere. The company is headquartered in Denver, Colorado, with restaurants in 10 states. A Spicy Pickle Franchising subsidiary owns and operates, as franchisor, the BG Urban brand in British Columbia, Canada. BG Urban locations serve coffee, pastries, breakfast items, lunch, dinner and a wide variety of desserts. For more information visit: http://www.spicypickle.com.
Certain statements in this press release, including statements regarding the number of restaurants we intend to open, are forward-looking statements. We use words such as "anticipate," "believe," "could," "should," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "predict," "project," "target," and similar terms and phrases, including references to assumptions, to identify forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to us as of the date any such statements are made and we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements. These statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the following: factors that could affect our ability to achieve and manage our planned expansion, such as the availability of a sufficient number of suitable new restaurant sites and the availability of qualified franchisees and employees; risks relating to our expansion into new markets; the risk of food-borne illnesses and other health concerns about our food products; changes in the availability and costs of food; changes in consumer preferences, general economic conditions or consumer discretionary spending; the impact of federal, state or local government regulations relating to our franchisees and employees, and the sale of food or alcoholic beverages; the impact of litigation; our ability to protect our name and logo and other proprietary information; the potential effects of inclement weather; the effect of competition in the restaurant industry; and other risk factors described from time to time in our SEC reports.