Taco Bell continues to accelerate its international growth by expanding further into the Spanish market.

Today, Taco Bell—the world’s largest Mexican-inspired restaurant chain—announced that the brand, in collaboration with its franchisee, Casual Brands Group of Madrid, will begin building an additional 45 restaurants across Spain and add more than 900 jobs to the local economy. By 2020, Spain will be home to more than 70 Taco Bell Restaurants and will be the largest market in Europe.

Casual Brands Group, led by CEO Ignacio Mora-Figueroa, began working with Taco Bell in 2008. The Group owns and operates all Taco Bell locations in Spain, as well as Juan Valdez Café and Delina’s. Mora-Figueroa, recognized as Taco Bell’s International Franchisee of the Year in 2015, is a well-respected entrepreneur in Spain and has done an amazing job developing and promoting the brand.

“I am passionate about Taco Bell and what the brand stands for,” says Mora-Figueroa. “My team is committed to providing más flavor, más value, más enjoyment, and más life to all of our fans.”

Casual Brands Group has been integral in building an avid fan base of taco lovers across the country. Starting with its first restaurant in Madrid, Casual Brands Group has now expanded to Barcelona, Valencia, Zaragoza and most recently, Seville. In 2015 alone, Taco Bell and Casual Brands Group added 10 new locations and there will be 31 Taco Bells across Spain by the end of 2016.

“We are thrilled to continue our restaurant development in Spain alongside Ignacio, who has shown his commitment to investing and growing our brand since day one,” says Melissa Lora, president of Taco Bell International. “We’ve seen immense enthusiasm from our Spanish fans over the past eight years, and know they will continue to celebrate our Live Más spirit as we expand to more communities across the country.”

While Spain’s claim to fame has been that it was the first Taco Bell market in the world to serve beer, Spanish Taco Bells have now pioneered tapas-style happy hour promotions that showcase the brand’s ability to leverage local insights to create unique market specials. Spain’s Tuesday Taco Happy Day has now become a regular part of fans’ weekly routines and continues to drive increased trial and loyalty for the brand.

There are currently more than 330 Taco Bell restaurants (including military bases) across 26 markets outside of the United States, with the goal of expanding the brand’s international presence to 1,000 restaurants by 2022. Domestically, Taco Bell is the nation’s leading Mexican-style quick service restaurant chain. The company and its franchisees operate more than 7,000 restaurants, generating more than $9 billion in sales. By 2022, the brand plans to become a $15 billion company in global system sales with 9,000 restaurants globally.

Fast Food, Franchising, Growth, News, Taco Bell