BK Packs Its Bags, Heads Back to France

    Industry News | November 29, 2012

    Autogrill Group and Burger King Worldwide announced a new agreement to bring the iconic Whopper sandwich back to French fans after 15 years. 

    Under the new agreement, Autogrill, a leader in food and beverage operations in Europe and established partner of BKW since 1982, will bring the Burger King brand to numerous travel outlets.

    Autogrill will be introducing the Burger King brand in its French outlets for the first time. The first opening will be at Marseille Airport, to be followed by another in the Reims Champagne motorway service area.

    The agreement between the two groups will consolidate the presence of the Burger King brand in travel outlet locations across Europe with development not only in France, but also in Switzerland and Poland, and further restaurants expected to open in Italy, Czech Republic, Germany, and the Netherlands.

    “Bringing the Burger King to a market like France renews a consolidated partnership, which we now intend to strengthen in Europe as well,” says Roberto Colombo, Autogrill’s chief operating officer of European countries.

    “We are excited to be reestablishing the Burger King brand in France, at travel outlet locations, with our trusted partner for 30 years, Autogrill,” says Leo Leon, vice president and general manager, Mediterranean division, Burger King EMEA.

    “We are confident that Autogrill will help reintroduce the Burger King brand to French and international travelers looking for high-quality, tasty, and good-value food and the unique taste of our flame-grilled burgers,” Leon adds. 

    Autogrill operates more than 140 Burger King restaurants (104 in North America, 35 in Europe Italy, Spain, Austria, Czech Republic, Germany, The Netherlands, and Denmark, and five in Asia, Australia, New Zealand, and Malaysia), which generated total revenues of more than $240 million. 

    The new Burger King restaurants in France will be offering customers the iconic Whopper sandwich, the Burger King brand’s flagship product for more than 50 years. 

    Customers will also have the opportunity to personalize their meals with the “Have It Your Way” formula. Alongside the wide menu range, new products are currently also under development to meet the expectations of French consumers.

    During the past year, Burger King Worldwide has pursued its vision of international expansion by creating strategic franchise arrangements with strong partners in emerging markets. 

    In the EMEA region (Europe, Middle East, and Africa), the brand is expanding into some of the fastest-growing economies worldwide—including Russia and most recently via a joint venture agreement in South Africa—in addition to China and Brazil globally.

    Autogrill has around 900 food and beverage locations (motorways, airports, railway stations, high streets, and shopping centers) in 16 countries in Europe, including Italy, accounting for 54 percent of its food and beverage revenues.

    In this sector, France is Autogrill’s biggest market in Europe after Italy in terms of size and number of channels.

    News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by WTWH Media LLC.