Pollo Tropical Opens Third Venezuela Franchise Location in Fourth Largest Mall in South America

Pollo Tropical announced the opening of its third franchised restaurant in Caracas, Venezuela at the Sambil Shopping Center, the fourth-largest mall in South America. This is the third in a ten-unit development agreement with Restaurantes Internacionales C.A.  The Venezuelan-based franchisee has opened two other Pollo Tropical restaurants in Barquisimeto and Punto Fijo since 2010.

The new Caracas Pollo Tropical location seats 100 customers and serves the brand’s famous flame-grilled chicken, roast pork, guava barbecue ribs and made-from-scratch side dishes.  Other menu favorites include the Pollo Tropical TropiChops – a casserole bowl of grilled chicken breast, pork or vegetables served atop a bed of white or yellow rice and topped with freshly made salsa. The menu also includes a wide array of other offerings, such as Caesar salad, a hearty Caribbean chicken soup, wraps, sandwiches and a variety of Hispanic desserts and beverages. In Venezuela, the brand also offers, as a side dish, arepitas, a small flatbread made of corn masa, which is a popular staple in the region.  The restaurant’s signature “salsa bar” also features the popular and flavorful Venezuelan guasacaca, an avocado relish.

“Venezuela is one of Latin America’s largest economies so it makes sense that we would partner with a strong restaurant operator to build out this Pollo Tropical market quickly,” said Marc Mushkin, Senior Vice President of International Development at Pollo Tropical. “Our franchise partner has opened three restaurants in little more than a year and they are on track to open more very soon.  Partnering with quality restaurant operations to build Building the brand’s presence in a timely fashion is an integral part of our overall expansion strategy.”

Mr. Mushkin added that Pollo Tropical is seeking additional international franchise partners to enter into multiple-unit franchise development agreements.  Pollo has targeted franchise territories in the Western Hemisphere include Canada, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico and the Caribbean, and also has initiatives underway in the UK, India and other key Asian markets.  “Since we are a growth brand and offer a taste profile that appeals to consumers around the globe, strong franchise partners are keenly interested in adding Pollo Tropical to their portfolio of brands,” he concluded.

Pollo Tropical owns and operates nearly 90 locations in the United States (Florida and Georgia), has more than 30 international franchised locations in Puerto Rico, the Bahamas, Ecuador, Honduras, Trinidad, Venezuela, and Costa Rica and has agreements in place for additional franchise restaurants in Panama, Tobago, Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao.  Pollo Tropical also has three franchised units located on college campuses in Florida.  The first Pollo Tropical restaurant opened in 1988 in Miami, Florida.

The unique restaurant concept is known for its fresh, never frozen, open flame grilled chicken, marinated in a proprietary blend of tropical fruit juices and spices, as well as authentic “made from scratch” side dishes. For more information on Pollo Tropical, including menu items and nutritional information, visit online at www.pollotropical.com.

Pollo Tropical is part of Fiesta Restaurant Group, Inc. which also owns the Taco Cabana restaurant chain.  Taco Cabana operates over 150 restaurants in Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico and offers a wide selection of fresh Tex-Mex and traditional Mexican food.   Fiesta Restaurant Group, Inc. is a public company trading on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the ticker symbol “FRGI”.   Additional information on Fiesta can be found at www.frgi.com.