Foodservice Equipment Reports

South African BBQ Concept Heads For Nashville

The southernmost tip of Africa is hungry for American pizza, chicken and burgers. KFC, McDonald’s, Domino’s and Pizza Hut are popular outposts in South Africa, and Starbucks just launched its first two African outlets at Johannesburg shopping malls. The growth of American chains is welcome to consumers there but poses a challenge to established South African quick-service brands trying to expand into other African markets.

South Africa has already had one franchise export success story in Nando’s Peri-Peri, a 29-year old flame-grilled chicken chain that has more than 1,000 stores in 30 countries, including more than a dozen in the U.S.

Now Chesanyama, which serves South African-style BBQ (known as braai) at 320 locations in South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia and Mozambique, has announced plans to open a restaurant this year outside Nashville, Tenn. The area is home to an expat South African community, according to the chain’s founder, Stelio Nathanael. He told Quartz Africa Weekly Brief  he hopes South Africa’s braai culture will appeal to American barbecue lovers. The chain will use meat and fresh produce from the U.S., but import spices, sauces and other non-perishable products from South Africa.

The company also hopes to expand in the UK.

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