The Halal Guys, the New York City–based American Halal street-food concept, announced the signing of a new franchise deal for Houston.

The new franchisee signed on to develop five units in the Houston area, representing half of the total available market, leaving more stores available for purchase in the same territory.

The Halal Guys was named to Time magazine’s Top 10 Yelped Businesses of 2013, and has recently been featured in The New York Times, on Bloomberg TV’s “Taking Stock with Pimm Fox,” and on Fox News alongside Fransmart CEO Dan Rowe. Featuring high-quality, proprietary ingredients and secret recipes, this street-food concept serves chicken and gyro meat platters over rice, topped with the signature white sauce.

After announcing plans to franchise in The New York Times and at the International Franchise Expo in New York City, The Halal Guys is now expanding internationally through a combination of company- and franchise-owned stores, starting with the first two brick-and-mortar locations in New York City. It has also signed multiunit franchise deals for Southern California, Washington D.C., and the Philippines.

The Halal Guys founder, Mohamed Abouelenein, told The NY Daily News about the brand’s new East Village restaurant, “For me, the [East Village restaurant] is not my aim. … This is just the first step. I am imagining something bigger than this.”

Fransmart, the franchise development company behind the explosive growth of brands like Five Guys Burgers and Fries and Qdoba Mexican Grill, is partnering with The Halal Guys to expand the brand worldwide. Fransmart’s penetration plan will focus on top markets in North America, seeking real estate in mass gathering areas like airports, train stations, malls, and neighborhoods with a significant late-night demand, as well as the Middle East.

Denise Lee Yohn: QSR's Marketing Guru, Growth, News, The Halal Guys