DUBLIN, OHIO — Wendy’s Japan, the fast-food chain’s franchisee in Japan, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire 100% of the equity of First Kitchen Ltd. from Suntory Holdings Ltd. The transaction includes 136 restaurants.
Wendy’s Japan said it plans to convert the First Kitchen restaurants into Wendy’s First Kitchen restaurants and plans to build new locations over time. Wendy’s First Kitchen has been open in two locations in Tokyo since 2015, offering the fast-food chain’s signature hamburgers and chicken sandwiches, as well as pasta and other First Kitchen products.
|Bob Wright, executive vice-president, chief operations officer and international, Wendy’s Co.|
“The First Kitchen restaurant brand is well-established with a presence in many desirable, busy locations throughout Japan,” said Bob Wright, executive vice-president, chief operations officer and international, Wendy’s Co. “We anticipate the acquisition will leverage the strengths of both Wendy’s and First Kitchen, while providing a springboard for growth in the coming years.”
He continued, “This is an example of how we are bringing our ‘narrow and deep’ international strategy to life by initially focusing on four key markets — Japan, India, Brazil and the Middle East — where we see considerable upside potential over the next few years. We believe our best approach is to support our franchisees in building Wendy’s brand strength in local markets and enhancing the economic model of their restaurants.”