Restaurant operators have largely put a pause on announcing grand expansion plans at the moment – but not street food franchise Chaiiwala, which has declared its intent to commence dozens of new kitchen schemes.
The Leicester-based firm, which offers South Asian street food, intends to open 156 restaurants and create more than 3,000 jobs between now and 2023 following a spike in delivery demand during the pandemic.
Chaiiwala, which is renowned for its Karak Chaii tea and Desi breakfast, presently operates 32 stores across the country but wants to open larger, more accessible restaurants in major cities such as London, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Sheffield and Manchester.
It has also recently unveiled plans for sites in Coventry, Southampton, Reading and Watford.
Franchise director Nil Naik said the company’s offer resonates well with desi and ethnic demographic customers but its aim is to reach a wider audience.
“By opening bigger stores in new locations, we are confident that the brand will achieve a bigger reach and help more customers discover what we think is the best chaii in the UK,” he told the East Midlands Business Desk.
“Since the pandemic we have increased our delivery options across all third-party platforms such as Deliveroo, Uber Eats and Just Eat, and this has increased our takeaway sales by 10% – with take-out now accounting for more than 80% of our sales.”
As well as expanding in the UK, the company is also targeting franchise branches in Canada, Europe, the Middle East and South Africa.
It claims to have sold 189 locations in total and will open more than 50 stores per year over the next three years.