Burger King (US) India Plans to Open 700 Stores in India by 2025
Burger King India plans to open 700 stores in India by 2025, and will look to have a total of 325 stores in the country by December, said Rajeev Varman, the chief executive officer of the company.

The burger chain, which currently has 259 stores in the country, is gearing up to launch its initial public offering in the country, and has already received approval from the market regulator.

This initial public offering will be a combination of an offer for sale, and a fresh share issue and most of the proceeds that the company plans to raise through the fresh issue of shares will be used to expand operations.

Burger King India opened its first store in the country in November 2014 with its master franchise agreement with US-based Burger King. Only eight of its stores are sub-franchises, majorly at airports.

Apart from freedom on marketing and communication around the brand, the master franchise allows for flexibility on the menu, pricing and supply chain in India. This is a key strategic differentiator, Varman told Cogencis in an exclusive interaction.

The master franchise also allows rights for the entire country, Varman said. Burger King India is looking at roughly adding 75 stores each year, which factors in 1% or two-three stores being closed each year.While the double-digit growth in the Indian food market along with an increasing shift to the organised food market is conducive for the company’s growth, there are also an increasing number of small, independent cafes whose flavours are more local.

"Eating out which was a very minimal activity…has become a necessity today," Varman said. Dual-income and nuclear families, and particularly millennials, are resorting to eating out more often, and Burger King’s global positioning is with this group.

While the company is seeing strong growth, it is line with that of the market, effectively keeping its market share stable.

"Wherever we have gone and put a restaurant in the vicinity of other competitive restaurants, we have seen that there has been a rise in total sales for all of us," Varman said.

The company is also banking on its extensive vegetarian menu and value-pricing to give it an edge over more-established names in the country.