,Australia

Restaurant Brands eyeing 13 Taco Bell stores in ANZ this year

The announcement follows initial plans by Taco Bell to have 60 stores in the two markets by 2024.

Franchisor Restaurant Brands will open seven Taco Bell stores in Australia and six in New Zealand this year, the company announced.

Its first two Taco Bell stores in Jesmond and Blacktown, which opened last December, earned $600,000, described as “exceeding expectations.” Initial costs also resulted in an EBITDA loss of $700,000.

Taco Bell’s first store in New Zealand, located in New Lynn Mall, Auckland, opened with a first week’s sales of over NZ$150,000 and delivered over NZ700,000 in sales in its first two months trading. With establishment costs, the business incurred a NZ$300,000 loss.

The next store in Shortland Street, also in Auckland, is expected to open in the first quarter of 2020.

The NZX-listed company’s report follows initial plans by Taco Bell to have 60 stores in ANZ by 2024. Aside from Restaurant Brands, Taco Bell also has an expansion partner in ASX-listed Collins Foods.

The company also entered into a conditional agreement to acquire 70 KFC and Taco Bell stores in the US state of California to be settled in the first half of the December 2020 financial year.

Strong same store sales for KFC
Restaurant Brands’ KFC stores in Australia, meanwhile, were at $159.6 million, down $18.7 million or 10.5% from last year due to the reduced reporting period. Same store sales were up 5.1% last year and on a full-year equivalent basis, sales were up 5.8% or $10.3 million.

KFC New Zealand’s reported sales were down 8.4% to NZ$308.4 million due to the 44-week reporting year, but same store sales were up 5.2% and total full year equivalent sales were up 8.3%.

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