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Popeyes, Tim Hortons & Firehouse Subs Are Planning Hundreds of New Locations

The chains' parent company recently shared its five-year growth plans, which also include major upgrades at Burger King.
FACT CHECKED BY Justine Goodman

This week, Restaurant Brands International (RBI)—the parent company of Popeyes, Burger King, Tim Hortons, and Firehouse Subs—announced plans to reach 40,000 restaurants by 2028. The company currently has over 30,000 restaurants across more than 120 countries.

Looking at Popeyes, RBI shared that it aims to grow its presence in the U.S. and Canada from almost 3,400 locations in 2023 to over 4,200 restaurants by 2028. In addition to this expansion, the company will continue to "focus on attracting more profitable digital guests," increasing its digital mix of sales, and streamlining restaurant operations through its "easy-to-run kitchens." These kitchens will have new equipment, improved layouts, and upgraded technology.

 McDonald's Plans to Open Thousands of New Restaurants This Year

Regarding Tim Hortons' growth, RBI noted that the chain's U.S. business "is expected to be the largest contributor of net restaurant growth in its home markets." The company currently has over 630 U.S. restaurants and strives to reach 1,000 by 2028.

"Tim Hortons ended 2023 with its largest number of U.S. restaurant openings in over five years, including some important expansions into new markets such as Texas and Georgia," a brand rep told Eat This, Not That! "The brand has also finalized agreements with franchisees committed to open new restaurants in additional markets, including Tennessee, Missouri, Delaware and New Jersey in the coming years."

Other areas of focus for Tim Hortons include growing the market share of its PM daypart—meaning its afternoon and evening offerings—through wraps, bowls, savory pastries, snacking, and new product innovation. The chain also plans for "significant growth" in cold beverages, which had a market share of 25% for 2023.

Tim Hortons
Photo: JHVEPhoto / Shutterstock

RELATED: Popeyes Just Brought Back Its Popular Fish Sandwich & Other Goodies

Meanwhile, Firehouse Subs is focusing on growing in "attractive and under-penetrated" markets in the U.S. and Canada. RBI plans to develop 300 net new annual units over the next few years, reaching 800 new locations by 2028. According to the Firehouse Subs' website, the chain currently has more than 1,250 restaurants.

Along with this expansion, Firehouse Subs also plans to scale its digital channels to 100% of sales over the next few years and boost its speed of service with equipment innovation.

Burger King

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As part of Burger King's "Reclaim the Flame" initiative, the chain's focus will be on modernizing and re-franchising the "vast majority" of its approximately 1,000 restaurants. RBI expects to complete this within five to seven years.

The parent company aims to modernize 85% to 90% of its Burger King restaurants and drive "incremental sales through remodels and effective marketing" ahead of 2028. Additionally, Burger King has the pending acquisition of Carrols Restaurant Group, its largest franchisee. Once complete, the $1B transaction will allow the brand to reclaim more than 1,000 Burger King stores across 23 states.

Looking internationally, RBI said each of its four brands is in different stages of development. However, the company plans to open at least 7,000 new restaurants in international markets over the next five years. That's a lot of chicken wings, burgers, coffee, and subs!

Brianna Ruback
Brianna is a staff writer at Eat This, Not That! She attended Ithaca College, where she graduated with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Communication Studies. Read more about Brianna