KFC steps up competition with eighth store in Nairobi
US fast food chain KFC has opened its eighth store in Nairobi among eateries in the capital.
The new store comes in the wake of American Franchise Subway’s unveiling of its fifth store in Nairobi last month.
KFC’s Mama Ngina Street outlet has a sitting capacity of 70 people and is targeting office workers and cinema patrons, tapping the high pedestrian traffic along the street.
The street, and the surrounding area, has become a popular catchment for restaurateurs.
It features three Java branches, a Steers outlet, a Cold Stone Creameries, a Teriyaki Japan eatery, a Subway and Saudi Arabian franchise Al Baik as well as KFC all within a short distance from each other.
KFC, which set up shop in Nairobi in 2011, has been expanding its footprint in the Kenyan capital including the introduction of the first Drive Thru concept store. The venture cost the fast food chain about Sh100 million ($1 million), the franchise’s average investment in a single store.
Fast food chains have set up shop in popular addresses in Nairobi’s central business district or malls in leafy suburbs such as Westlands, Upper Hill and Gigiri which are mainly populated by international civil servants and diplomats.
At the end of 2014, the company announced plans of opening an additional 10 branches within two years.
The franchise has since added to its branches the Mama Ngina outlet, the Garden City outlet, the Hub in Karen (expected to start operating this month) as well as a branch in the newly rebuilt Westgate Mall.
Local franchise holder Kuku Foods Kenya plans to invest Sh201 million ($2.1 million) in an expansion project.
Tamarind Group is also expected to open Carnivore Express this month.
The casual dining restaurant will sell hot dogs, burgers and grilled meat, among other fast-foods on its menu.
Foreign food chains have in the past two years turned up the heat on local operators with their global brands.
Subway, Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), Domino’s Pizza, Cold Stone Creamery, Teriyaki, Naked Pizza and Planet Yoghurt have all opened local outlets in recent years.
South African Steers also opened a new branch in the CBD last year while Java has opened multiple branches in and outside Nairobi.