Industry News | March 28, 2007

Ruby Tuesday Eyes Middle East

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Ruby Tuesday, Inc. announced plans last week for the development of 25 restaurants in the Middle East. Perspective countries include Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Lebanon, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, Jordan, and the United Arab Emirates. The restaurants will be developed and operated by the National Arabic Company for Restaurant Management of Kuwait City and will open over the next seven years.

"We are extremely excited about expanding our relationship with Ruby Tuesday in the Middle East," says Emad Bu Khamseen, owner and chairman of NAC. "We are committed to bring the Ruby Tuesday experience to people throughout the Middle East," he adds.

Bu Khamseen said that NAC will also establish a training center in Kuwait City for Ruby Tuesday employees. This marks the first franchisee-operated training facility, and it will be modeled after the Ruby Tuesday training complex that is located at the Tennessee-based company's Restaurant Support Center.

Mark Ingram, president of franchising, says that Ruby Tuesday is extremely proud to partner with NAC in the Middle East. "The Bu Khamseen family is an ideal partner, and because they represent the Ruby Tuesday brand so well, we are confident that their creation of the first satellite training facility for our international team members will be a tremendous resource for NAC and other franchisees," he says.

This is the second time the franchise development agreement has been expanded since 2001, an indication of the popularity of the Ruby Tuesday brand in the Middle East and the development and operating performance of NAC. Ruby Tuesday has been expanding its franchise presence in the area for the past six years and continues to franchise additional restaurants worldwide. Currently, there are four Ruby Tuesday restaurants in the Middle East, including locations in Kuwait City; Abu Hlaifa, Kuwait; and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Additional restaurants are scheduled to open soon in Dubai City, United Arab Emirates and in Cairo.