US Food Chain Mr Pretzels eyes a slice of Kenya

American fast-food chain, Mr. Pretzel, is set to enter the Kenyan market in a franchise deal with a local firm.

“Kenya is the first country in Africa. This is buoyed by the economy and the middle class who have growing taste for quality products,” Snackbyte director Paul Asamba told a local business daily.

Under the franchise agreement, Snackbyte will be the exclusive seller of Mr. Pretzel products in Kenya for a decade.

Kenya’s middle class with exotic taste along with the country’s mushrooming malls is what enticed the US brands to enter the Kenyan market.

“The company is targeting a niche in the ‘grab-and-go’ food market where there are no similar products.”

Mr. Pretzel is a company founded in 1994, and has a presence in over 20 countries, including the United Kingdom, Brazil and Mexico. Its 200 kiosks specialise in selling pretzels, baked foods of European origin that are usually shaped like knots.

Kenya has over the years thanks to a stable economy and friendly policies cut a niche  for itself as one of Africa’s top investment destination.

A recent by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) showed Kenya beat Africa’s economic giants, Nigeria and South Africa to emerge as the top investment destination for African CEOs.

Furthermore according to Infomineo, a global business research company specialising in Africa and the Middle East, Nairobi is the leading destination for Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) companies.

This has seen the country attract international brands as Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), Hardees, Burger King, Dominos and Cold Stone Creamery, all of which have revealed plans to expand their brands over the next few years in Kenya.


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