Carl's Jr

CKE Restaurants Holdings has reached an agreement with Boparan Restaurant Group to develop Carl’s Jr. restaurant brand in the UK and Ireland.

Under the agreement, BRG will open, operate, and franchise restaurants throughout the territory as the exclusive Carl’s Jr. developer.

Carl’s Jr.’s already has nearly 100 restaurants in Europe, across Spain, France, Denmark, Turkey, and Switzerland.

The QSR brand was founded more than 80 years ago in California. The fast food offering includes chargrilled burgers, chicken tenders, and ice-cream shakes.

CKE currently operates more than 1,100 international restaurants in more than 35 countries around the world.

Mike Woida, president of CKE International, said: “As part of our strategic growth plan, we’ve had our sights set on the U.K. and the Republic of Ireland for quite a while and are extremely excited to answer the international demand for our signature flavours.

“BRG has a proven record of success and shares our vision for Carl’s Jr. in the U.K. We look forward to serving our guests in the region as we continue our path toward global growth.”

Satnam Leihal, CEO of BRG, added: “Carl’s Jr.’s international success speaks for itself. The brand offers fantastic food quality and brilliant innovation, and we look forward to replicating the born in California, ‘eat like you mean it’ experience in the U.K.

“This partnership aligns perfectly with our commitment to delivering exceptional dining experiences, and we look forward to introducing Carl’s Jr. to the U.K. and Irish markets.”

Last year Tim Lowther, Carl’s Jr general manager for Europe, told MCA he saw potential for “exponential growth” in the UK, with an eye on drive-thrus, high streets, shopping centres, and travel hubs.

The comments followed the announcement of a partnership Christie & Co to supports its launch by seeking out franchise partners for a national rollout.

“The UK’s capable of 300-400 restaurants over time,” Lowther said. “Covid has gotten in the way of the launch, but regardless, we’ve been working in the background…

“We’re laser-focused on the UK and Germany for growth. There’s huge momentum on our side.”

Carl's Jr