Wendy's Entering Brazil Market through Joint Venture
The Dublin, Ohio, USA-headquartered Wendy's Company will soon be selling hamburgers, french fries and other products in Brazil following the grand opening of two flagship restaurants in São Paulo set for mid-July.
Plans call for significant expansion over time. Growth will be driven in South America’s largest country through Wendy's Brazil, a joint venture formed in 2015 between affiliates of Infinity Services and Starboard, one of Wendy's largest franchisees in the USA, and a subsidiary of the Wendy's Company.
Based in São Paulo, Infinity Services has successfully brought several well-known restaurant brands to Brazil in recent years. Starboard, led by veteran Wendy's franchisee CEO Andrew Levy and President Marcos Silva, operates 182 Wendy's restaurants in nine states.
"We choose São Paulo for the Wendy's introduction because it is the main financial and gastronomic capital of the country," said Marcel Gholmieh, chief executive officer of Wendy's Brazil and Infinity Services. "Our initial objective is to create flagship restaurant locations, establish the Wendy's brand and then, longer-term, start thinking about potential partnerships with local groups in other areas of Brazil."
"We are pleased to partner with two highly capable operators who have a growth mindset, proven restaurant experience and strong customer focus. Brazil is one of the key global markets where we see considerable potential, and where we are investing additional energy and resources as part of our 'narrow and deep' international strategy," said Bob Wright, Wendy’s executive vice president and chief operations officer-international.
He added: "We believe this joint collaboration will provide a springboard for growth. Starboard has a deep knowledge of our business and knows what it takes to run a successful Wendy's restaurant, while Infinity Services is immersed in the Brazilian market and culture.”
The Wendy's Company is the world's third-largest quick service hamburger company. Its system includes approximately 6,500 franchise and company-operated restaurants in the United States and 28 countries and US territories around the world. In Latin America, it is currently present in Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Venezuela, Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala and Panama.