CARPINTERIA, Calif. - November 11, 2014 - (BUSINESS WIRE) - CKE Restaurants Holdings, Inc., parent company of Carl's Jr.® and Hardee's® restaurant chains, today reported its annual Stars for Heroes™ in-store fundraising campaign raised more than $1.1 million this year to benefit U.S. military families and veterans. Funds raised in 2014 go directly to national beneficiaries USA Cares and Dream Foundation's "Dreams for Veterans" as well as to regional military charities with existing ties to individual Carl's Jr. and Hardee's restaurant communities.
Since 2011, the Stars for Heroes program has harnessed the national reach of CKE's company-operated and franchise restaurants as well as the generosity of customers to support U.S. military veterans.
"Supporting active duty and military veterans is part of our Carl's Jr. and Hardee's heritage," said Andy Puzder, chief executive officer of CKE Restaurants. "Over the last four years, Stars for Heroes has raised more than $3.5 million to support U.S. military families. And, this year, we raised more funds than any other single Stars for Heroes campaign. I'm very proud of our CKE employees, Carl's Jr. and Hardee's franchisees and restaurant crews who made this happen. Despite the economically challenging times we live in, our customers and employees stepped up and demonstrated an outpouring of support for the brave men and women of the U.S. military who will receive these funds for their times in need."
Puzder, CKE Restaurants, the Star Franchise Association (Carl's Jr. franchisees) and the International Hardee's Franchise Association were recently honored for their commitment to USA Cares at the charity's annual gala in Louisville, KY.
"USA Cares has been helping military families for over 10 years and we are happy to have the support of CKE Restaurants and the Stars for Heroes campaign for the fourth year in a row," said Peter Giusti, president of USA Cares. "The Stars for Heroes donation goes directly to active duty soldiers, veterans, and National Guard members and their families who have bravely served our country and need a little extra help to ease financial distress as well as improving public awareness of this cause."
Since 1994, Dream Foundation has been a regular charity partner of CKE and for the past three years, the foundation has received Stars for Heroes funds.
"The long-term support of CKE, Carl's Jr. and Hardee's has helped us fulfill the dreams of hundreds of military veterans and their families through the years," said Kisa Heyer, executive director of Dream Foundation. "In fact, it was the Stars for Heroes campaign and CKE's desire for us to create a veteran-specific program that was the impetus for us to create our Dreams for Veterans initiative that we are launching soon."
In addition to the two national beneficiaries, CKE selected Lone Survivor Foundation and Stand Up and Play to receive Stars for Heroes funds. Dozens of other regional charities also were selected by the Carl's Jr. and Hardee's franchise associations.
Since its creation in 2011, the Stars for Heroes program has supported more than 75 U.S. military charities. During the in-store campaign, restaurant guests donated $1 and received a commemorative "Stars for Heroes" cutout to personalize and place on display in the restaurant. As a thank you for their donation, customers received $10 worth of Carl's Jr. or Hardee's coupons to use toward future purchases. For more information about the Stars for Heroes national beneficiaries, visit their websites at www.dreamfoundation.org and www.usacares.org.
CKE Restaurants Holdings, Inc. ("CKE") is a privately held company headquartered in Carpinteria, Calif. Through its subsidiaries, CKE owns and licenses Carl's Jr.® and Hardee's® quick-service restaurants. CKE operates Carl's Jr. and Hardee's as one brand under two names acknowledging the regional heritage of both banners. CKE has a total of 3,540 franchised or company-operated restaurants in 42 states and 33 foreign countries and U.S. territories. Known for its one-of-a-kind premium menu items such as 100 percent Black Angus Thickburgers®, Made from Scratch™ Biscuits, Hand-Breaded Chicken Tenders™ and Fresh Baked Buns, as well as an award-winning marketing approach, the Carl's Jr./Hardee's brand continues to deliver substantial and consistent growth in the U.S. and overseas. The Carl's Jr./Hardee's system is now 77 percent franchised, with international restaurants representing 18 percent of the system. For more information about CKE, please visit www.ckr.com or its brand sites at www.carlsjr.com and www.hardees.com.
SOURCE CKE Restaurants Holdings, Inc.