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Burger Joints Of The World, Kenny Rogers Roasters

10 July 2023

A bit of a misnomer this one, as Kenny Rogers Roasters actually sold wood fired rotisserie chickens, rather than burgers. But hey, I am a Kenny Rogers fan so what can i say.

The famous country musician teamed up with John Y. Brown Jr., a former KFC C.E.O. Having been the governor of Kentucky, Brown decided to return to the restaurant business, and got together with Rogers in 1991 to open the first location in Coral Springs, Florida,. Their selling point was that rotisserie chicken was a healthier option to regular fried chicken with a tagline of “less fat…less salt…less calories” .

Kenny Rogers
Kenny Rogers

They gradually expanded the menu to include Turkey, ribs and numerous side dishes. Growing to around 350 locations in the US, Canada, Asia and the Middle East by 1995. In 91 ‘Cluckers’ a minor chain of chicken restaurants sued them for allegedly copying its menus and recipes. They dealt with this by buying a majority stake in the chain.

The original team of Brown and Rogers expanded the chain to some 425 stores, before selling out to Malaysia-based Berjaya Group in 1996. They announced plans to open in the UK, even going so far as to purchase land, but in the end nothing came of it.

Decline And Change Of Ownership

by 1996 they had reached an annual turnover of $300 million. By 1998 they were in chapter 11 bankruptcy. As not only other chains had added similar products, but many supermarkets and other stores offered rotisserie chicken. Nathan’s Famous Inc, bought the chain out of bankruptcy for $1.25 million, and within a short space of time they had been reduced to some 90 outlets, 40 in the USA.

In 2008 ownership changed again when they were sold to Roasters Asia Pacific (Cayman) Limited, the Asian franchise owner. This proved a good move, as the chain continued to flourish in the Asian market and grew to over 140 stores by 2011.

By Larsdominic – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

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