Page 55 - IACC Newsletter August-September 2013 Issue 13

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California based Burger Chain Johnny Rockets to start two restaurants in NCR
Positioning itself as an upscale rival to McDonald’s, the chain will open its first two outlets in Delhi in December.
The all-singing, all-dancing burger chain from the US will shortly make its India debut. Johnny Rockets is planning to start
two restaurants in the National Capital Region later this year, positioning itself as an upscale rival to McDonald's.
New Delhi-based Prime Gourmet, the brand's franchisee for India, will open one restaurant each in Delhi's Select
Citywalk mall and Gurgaon's Ambience mall during the Christmas period.
The burgers will be priced at Rs 275 to Rs 375 compared with Rs 25 to Rs 110 excluding taxes at McDonald's, said
Bakshish Dean, a renowned professional chef and executive director of Prime Gourmet.
While the menu will have the sandwiches, shakes and fries that the chain is known for in the US, it will also feature
vegetarian dishes as well as food that's location specific. "The sit-down restaurants in India are plush so we have the
liberty to introduce some localised elements," said Dean.
For example, its planned restaurant on the Delhi-Amritsar highway will sell food that's inspired by the cooking at the
ubiquitous dhabas that line the route, Dean said. Toward this end, Johnny Rockets is developing a burger with the
flavours of coriander and green chillies.
Johnny Rockets will open in Mumbai seven months after the NCR inaugural. The company plans 22 outlets across the
country in the next five years, Dean said. The NCR outlets opening by the end of the year will serve beer alongside
burgers, sandwiches and beverages. "Beer and burgers go well together and it's a great combination," Dean said.
Johnny Rockets will be the latest entrant into India's so-called quick service restaurant (QSR) segment, which is expected
to grow 30% annually until 2015, according to a Rabobank study. The annual QSR market is expected to swell to Rs
16,785 crore by 2018 from Rs 5,500 crore now, according to consultancy firm Technopak Advisors.
Johnny Rockets restaurants are known for their diner style theme, playing music from the 1950s to 1970s and staff who
entertain guests with song-and-dance routines. That ambience will be maintained in India as well, with a team from the
US visiting India to train employees. "There would be proper training," Dean said. "They have to know the proper
moves."
Besides the sit-down format to begin with, the company will also have high-street restaurants and a food-court
presence. After setting up the first dozen stores, Prime Gourmet is planning to sub-franchise the Johnny Rockets to
partners.
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