h1

restaurants going international

Wednesday 9 July, 2008

I came across this article in the Chicago Tribune Restaurant chains feasting in markets outside U.S. The world has to eat & loves to eat American fast food. This can be a blessing & a curse for American companies. It’s a blessing because international markets contribute proportionately well to profitability, but denigrate our reputation as purveyors of unhealthy food lacking in freshness & quality. I find it odd when I run into some American restaurants in unexpected places/countries, but hey, if they’re successful in those places, more power to ’em. I remember when living/working in Germany being impressed by McDonald’s offering beer on the menu. When I was working in Poland in 1994-95, I remember KFC/PizzaHut/Taco Bells were everywhere while McDonalds were slow to build a market presence. I think a big part of their success lies in the fact that corporate hq’s partner with strong local business people who are able to balance the global brand with local tastes. They do a good job of maintaining control by enforcing adherence to brand standards. /I’m surprised Burger King is supposedly just entering Poland. If I remember correctly, I believe they were alrady there. I heard Tom Monahan, founder of Pizza Hut, speak in a class when I attended the University of Michigan, & he didn’t discuss international expansion much then, 27+ years ago.

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