DENVER - December 19, 2012 - (BUSINESS WIRE) - Smashburger, the rapidly expanding better burger chain, is pleased to announce the grand opening of its first Saudi Arabia location. The new restaurant, located in the Capital City of Riyadh, is an international “flagship store” for the Smashburger brand. Estimated to be about 7,700 square feet, it is, by far, the largest location Smashburger has opened globally. It is the first of 20 locations planned for the area by franchise partner Al Taqa Alia. Al Taqa Alia is planning to open two more locations in 2013, including an airport site.
“We are excited to expand our footprint in the Middle East”, said David Prokupek, Chairman and CEO of Smashburger. “We’ve seen the excitement and energy for Smashburger here when we opened our first restaurant in Kuwait earlier this year. Now Kuwait will end the year with three units open. We expect to see the same growth and strength for our brand in Saudi Arabia.”
This popular American franchise is planning expansion in Saudi Arabia in both traditional and non-traditional locations, including an airport site in 2013. Recently named “America’s Most Promising Company” by Forbes magazine, Smashburger is on pace to become an international favorite as well. The opening of Smashburger’s first Saudi Arabian restaurant marks the fourth international country for the brand outside the United States. Such international growth will continue as Smashburger targets more locations in the Middle East, specifically Turkey, and makes plans for expansion into North Africa over the next couple of years.
“There is a strong appetite for premium American brands in the Middle East. Smashburger is at the top of the list,” said Mr. Kamel Ismail, the franchise operator for Saudi Arabia. “We looked to partner with Smashburger specifically because we knew the reputation of quality behind their product. The people of Saudi Arabia will be surprised and delighted with how good these burgers taste.”
Smashburger, a brand that has built its reputation on fresh, made-to-order beef that is “smashed” and seared to lock in the juices of the burger, offers a regional recipe in every market. In Saudi Arabia, the 100 percent Certified Halal Angus Beef local burger is topped with Saudi spices, cheddar cheese, red onion, lettuce, pickles, tomato and tahini sauce on a spicy chipotle bun. Guests can also opt for the same delicious recipe on its Saudi Chicken sandwich. The restaurant also serves a selection of irresistible sides, beverages and hand-spun Häagen-Dazs® shakes, including the locally-inspired Almond Sesame milkshake.
Smashburger is America’s fastest growing, fast casual “better burger” restaurant with global appeal, offering a variety of handcrafted menu items, including regionally inspired burgers and sides, and a ‘create your own’ model that allow guests to customize their experience. Smashburger also offers a wide assortment of chicken sandwiches, a selection of local beverages, craft beer and hand-spun Häagen-Dazs® shakes to provide a unique experience. Developed and owned by private equity firm Consumer Capital Partners (CCP), Smashburger operates and develops both corporate and multi-unit franchise territories across the globe with 191 restaurants across 29 markets in the United States, Canada, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Costa Rica. Smashburger recently topped Fast Casual’s 2012 Top Mover & Shakers list, and was named America’s Most Promising Company by Forbes magazine last year. It is the recipient of the International Council of Shopping Centers 2011 Hot Retailer Award and was also named to the Inc. 500 List of America's Fastest Growing Companies the past two years in a row. To learn more, visit www.smashburger.com.