Nando's

International Invasion

When it comes to global expansion, international operators are quick to point to the U.S. as the gateway to success. Foodservice here is booming, with expected restaurant industry sales in 2014 surpassing $680 billion, according to the National Restaurant Association—and the limited-service sector accounts for about $230 billion of it.

Foreign Exchange

Domestic brands are turning their attention to international markets, opening the door for foreign brands to make inroads in the U.S.

Canada-based Freshii established roots in the U.S. with its fresh food focus.
Canada-based Freshii established roots in the U.S. with its fresh food focus.

Now that many domestic brands are looking overseas for growth opportunities—and with Americans’ taste for ethnic flavors continuing to grow—international quick-service and fast-casual chains are expanding their presence in the U.S. The many up-and-coming operators offer stiff competition to myriad U.S. chains, including those in the chicken, Asian, baked goods, and sandwich categories.