KFC and Popeyes heat up the fried chicken war in Spain at the blow of openings

Fried chicken has become one of the most demanded foods, especially to order at home. In Spain, the arrival of Popeyes in 2019 and its rapid expansion has set off the alarm at KFC, the king of this food in our country since the opening of its first franchise in 1976. Now, both American companies wage their particular battle in a business whose potential is seen in expansion plans.

Recently, KFC announced its intention to close 2024 with more than 400 restaurants in Spain, where it has reached 247 stores in 2022, the year in which it has generated more than 1,000 new jobs.

In fact, KFC ended the year achieving the milestone of having surpassed its number of openings in 2019, which until now held its annual record, with a total of 30 new restaurants in 2022. Its latest stores were opened in Madrid, Vigo and the Valencian Community. .

The intention is to maintain its leadership as king of chicken. “After having achieved an annual record of openings, we are going to continue betting on increasing our presence in all the communities together with our franchisees,” he said. Jose Manuel Rubio, Chief Development Officer & Market Coordinator of KFC Iberia.

Popeyes’ expansion plan for 2024 proposes having half the presence of KFC in the country. That is not why it is unimportant. The company plans to carry out more than 40 openings this year and reach 200 stores in 2024. If we take into account that they have only been in Spain for three years, their plans to rise as the king of fried chicken in the country are more ambitious.

[De Madrid a Guadalajara: el pollo fresco y ‘low cost’ de Popeyes se expande con el objetivo de abrir 200 locales]

Since his arrival in Spain, Popeyes has added a total investment of close to 80 million euros, and employs more than 2,300 people distributed in the 77 restaurants which is open all over the country.

From the company itself they assume it that way. “We have the objective of becoming the first restaurant option when it comes to consuming chicken in our country,” they point out.


Popeyes, owned by Restaurant Brands Iberia (master franchisor of Burger King y Tim Hortons), landed in Spain in 2019, more specifically on November 21 in Madrid. And she clearly did it to fight KFC with what sets them apart from the rest.

It’s about your secret recipe of seven spices that gives the differential flavor to the chicken, which is later marinated for 12 hours and prepared and coated by hand. This process ensures that the product is always crisp on the outside.

Both companies have their origin in the US. Popeyes was founded in New Orleans in 1972, has 50 years of experience in the sector and more than 3,600 restaurants in 25 countries.

For its part, Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), belonging to Yum! Brands, originates in 1939 when Harland D. Sanders began preparing fried chicken.

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