The first Burger King restaurant will open in Prague within a few months. The fast food chain, which is a strong rival of McDonald’s in the US, has big plans not only in the Czech Republic, but also in the whole region. It wants to become number one on the European market.
“Our strategy is to be a dominant company in the region of central and eastern Europe,” Daniel Kasper, Burger King’s brand president, told Hospodářské noviny.
The first condition on reaching this goal was fulfilled last week. AmRest, which will operate Burger King restaurants in the Czech Republic, signed a final agreement on getting a license authorising it to operate the brand’s fast foods.
“Thanks to that, Burger King is now represented in Poland, Bulgaria and we will soon open restaurants in the Czech Republic. Czech, Slovak and Slovenian markets are very important to us. We have been therefore preparing for the market entrance very carefully,” says Kasper.
USD 50,000 for brand
In the Czech Republic, Burger King will operate on the principle of franchising, similarly to its main rival McDonald’s. Anyone interested in franchising has to pay USD 50,000 to AmRest and sign an agreement for 20 years.
Like its competitor, the company, plans to open restaurants in big shopping centres.
It is therefore dealing with developers and shopping centre operators, according to the information available to HN.
For example, the company is eyeing the centre Arkády Pankrác, which will open by the end of this year, as well as shopping galleries that are already open, such as Prague’s Palladium and Centrum Chodov.
Gossip, the best advertising campaign
Like the coffee-shop chain Starbucks, which also belongs to AmRest’s portfolio, Burger King is not planning any extreme investments in advertising on its way to reaching the number one position on the market.
“Most of our promotion is happening mainly thanks to Burger King fans. People who like our burgers and spread the word among their friends, make the best advertising campaign for us,” Kasper says.
Burger King, which has restaurants in 65 countries around the world, is famous mainly thanks to its Whopper sandwich with meat, which has a “flame grilled taste” according to the advertising slogan.
Fast foods are successful in the Czech Republic. Experts estimate there are about 13,000 different stalls or restaurants in the country.
Sausage versus pizza
Mc Donald’s is number one on the market. Its more than 70 restaurants saw 53 million customers last year. They spent CZK 3.2 billion in the restaurants.
The “chicken” chain KFC is also doing well and the Subway network offering baguette sandwiches is slowly breaking through as well.
Competition on the Czech market could become even stronger soon.
Besides Burger King, the American fast food chain New York Pizza is another hot candidate for entering the Czech market.
“Czech Republic is an interesting market for us, and we want to enter it through franchising,” Susan P. McDaniel, responsible for New York Pizza’s franchising, told Hospodářské noviny recently.
Burger King has much stronger competitors on the American market, its home country.
Besides KFC and Subway, known also in the Czech Republic, these include Pizza Hut and Wendy’s, which became famous for its “homemade” hamburgers and French fries. Or similar chains like Hardee’s and Carl JR, which offer the same products.
Another strong fast food chain, Taco Bell, offers slightly different meals, as it focuses on Mexican cuisine.