BurgerFuel opens its first store in Saudi Arabia to large crowds eager to sample the New Zealand gourmet burgers.

BurgerFuel has opened its first store in Saudi Arabia. The new large 200 seat format opened in Dammam last month to a big Arabian crowd who queued up to buy the New Zealand Gourmet Burgers and it`s been non-stop ever since. The BurgerFuel brand has already translated well into the culture with a local enthusiast arriving on opening day to pass on his best wishes as well as a gift of a 1971 Lincoln Continental, to add to the BurgerFuel classic car collection.

 The company said that the opening of its first store in Saudi Arabia represented a significant milestone in BurgerFuel`s history and another big step on their international journey. “It`s taken a lot of time and truckloads of energy – but we`ve done it” says International CEO Chris Mason. “The actual reality of getting New Zealand made burgers to pop out in another country as foreign as Saudi, ensuring quality and integrity is identical to home, has been a major undertaking. The store is pumping, the tills are ringing and that`s what we are all about” he said.

 The company that has bought the rights to roll out BurgerFuel stores in Saudi Arabia is in the top 100 companies in that country. “Our Arab partners, Abdullah Fouad, are big players who are highly respected. They own the shopping mall where our first store has been built” says Chris Mason. “They are very excited about the BurgerFuel concept becoming a reality and now that they`ve seen the first store take off like it has, they`re accelerating plans to roll out more stores in Saudi Arabia and their second territory, Bahrain. They`re also taking a keen interest in BurgerFuel Worldwide as a company and the global food brand we are building at the high quality end of the market” he says.

 BurgerFuel is exporting its own NZ beef patties, locally produced tomato relish, vegetarian society approved vege patties and kumara fries directly to the GCC. This in itself creates a uniquely high quality product. Comments from locals are that there is nothing like the BurgerFuel concept in Saudi Arabia and it adds to the country`s moves to modernise its horizons. Chairman Peter Brook says that “Using our own beef not only ensures that we are delivering the best possible burgers, but we are also exporting value added New Zealand beef, which is a contribution to our economy”. He says that “specialist store fit-outs were also made in New Zealand and exported in containers to the GCC”.

 BurgerFuel will receive on-going royalties from every store that opens and incoming revenue began “the day the cash registers started ringing” according to Chris Mason. “Our international model is all about licensing our brand and our systems and using local knowledge and capital by appointing a Master Licensee in each country” says Mason. This store is BurgerFuel`s largest and represents its first casual dining format with table service, extensive seating and integrated customer zones.

 BurgerFuel Dubai is next. That store is located on the premium Jumeirah Beach strip and is expected to open in April.

 Us Kiwis don’t need to go that far to enjoy yummy burgers though. You’ll find BurgerFuel in the following centres: Auckland, Mt Maunganui, Tauranga, Hamilton, Rotorua, New Plymouth, Taupo, Napier, Palmerston North, Lower Hutt, Johnsonville, Wellington.

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