The openings of a Hardee’s in Marassi, Egypt and a Carl’s Jr. in Conroe, Texas mark a major milestone for CKE Restaurants Holdings Inc. as the Company’s 3,500th and 3,501st restaurants worldwide.  Opened in late July, the Marassi Hardee’s is owned by franchisee Kuwait Food Company,  which owns another 274 Hardee’s in the region.  The Carl’s Jr. in Conroe is owned by Zubha Foods, LLC, which operates six other Carl’s Jr. restaurants in Houston and San Antonio, TX.

“The opening of our 3,500th restaurant is an incredible achievement and demonstrates how much Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. fans across the world love our premium quality food and service,” said Andy Puzder, CEO of CKE Restaurants Holdings Inc.  “Our restaurants in Marassi and Conroe may be separated by an ocean and nearly 7,000 miles, but they’re connected by the same commitment to quality and entrepreneurial spirit that exists among all our international and domestic franchise partners as together we continue growing our premier global brand. We’re big, we’re bold and it works.”

CKE owns, operates and franchises Carl’s Jr.and Hardee’squick-service restaurants as one global brand in 42 states and 31 foreign countries and U.S. territories, generating approximately $4 billion in annual system revenues. CKE attributes Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s sustained growth in part due to the company’s focus on delivering premium-quality menu items, including charbroiled 100 percent Black Angus beef Thickburgers served on Fresh Baked Buns, Made from Scratch Biscuits, Hand-Breaded Chicken Tenders and Hand-Scooped Ice Cream Shakes.  The brand is differentiated further thanks to its best-in-class service and cutting-edge advertising targeting the “young, hungry guy” market around the world.  

“Fifty-eight percent of new restaurant openings since Fiscal Year 2011 have come from outside the U.S.” said Puzder.  “Consumers across the world are hungry for a better burger as well as superior service and we deliver both. Our accelerated expansion overseas is also thanks to the leadership of Ned Lyerly, who we recently promoted to president of our international division.” 

CKE’s largest market outside the U.S. is in the Middle East under the Hardee’s banner. The second largest market for CKE is Mexico under the Carl’s Jr. banner. Carl’s Jr. franchised restaurants recently opened in new markets in Denmark and the Bahamas.  The brand continues to build locations throughout the Middle East, Mexico, Canada, New Zealand, Russia, China, Central America and South America.  CKE is targeting Australia, India, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia and Europe as future growth markets.

Forty-two percent of CKE’s new restaurant growth has been in the U.S. since 2011 with 90% of those restaurants opened by franchisees. Currently operating in 42 states, the Company and its franchisees have opened 84 new Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s restaurants in 24 different states over the past 12 months.     

“We see a lot of prime territory for domestic expansion and we have great partners eager to grow with us,” said Puzder.  “Very soon, we’ll be celebrating Hardee’s highly anticipated return to the Northeast as franchise locations open first in New York, New Jersey and then Connecticut.  Our Company and franchisees also continue to build new Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s restaurants especially in markets where the brand has room to grow such as Seattle, Chicago, Detroit, New Orleans, South Florida, Tennessee, Pennsylvania and Texas among others. Our new as well as long-time franchisees are entrepreneurs who see value in our innovative, premium and proven franchise model.”

Source: CKE Restaurant Holdings