Companies

KFC takes aim at rivals with new branch amid potato import furore

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Summary

  • US-based fast-food chain Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) has opened a new branch in Nairobi amid a potato importation controversy in Kenya.
  • The expansion is set to increase competition with rival brands Subway, Java and ArtCaffé.
  • KFC, which operates locally through franchisee Kuku Foods East Africa, opened the new branch last week at TotalEnergies Clay City on Kasarani–Mwiki road in Nairobi.

US-based fast-food chain Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) has opened a new branch in Nairobi amid a potato importation controversy in Kenya.

The expansion is set to increase competition with rival brands Subway, Java and ArtCaffé.

KFC, which operates locally through franchisee Kuku Foods East Africa, opened the new branch last week at TotalEnergies Clay City on Kasarani–Mwiki road in Nairobi.

The expansion comes at a time Kenya has seen increased interest from global fast-food outlets fuelled by growing demand.

Increased activity in this market segment has also coincided with the rise in the construction of new malls, offering retailers a concentration of well-heeled shoppers.

The new outlet will raise KFC’s national branch count to 26 and comes nine months after it opened its Mombasa one in March. The fast-food chain also plans to open a new branch at Maiyan Mall, whose anchor tenant is Naivas Supermarket.

The branch expansion is coming at a time KFC is has suffered a shortage of potatoes at its outlets in Kenya following delays in delivery from its overseas suppliers, forcing it to offer customers alternative food items in place of French fries.

Chief executive for East Africa Jacques Theunissen told the Business Daily last week that the shortage of chips, as they are commonly known, was due to a hitch in the global supply of potatoes.

KFC had initially said it does not source potatoes locally on global quality standards.

It did not also specify the global quality and safety standards a potential supplier in Kenya must meet to supply the firm with potatoes for chips.