Nation's Restaurant News: Dickey's taking on the Middle East
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After 75 years in business, Dickey's Barbecue Pit is going global. The nearly 600-unit chain has partnered with Middle Eastern hospitality group, Serenity Hospitality, to bring 45 Dickey's locations to seven countries throughout the Middle East.
"Dickey's has been in search for the right partner to take our brand international for some time now, and we truly believe we have found that in the folks from Serenity Hospitality, Roland Dickey Jr., CEO of Dickey's Capital Group, said in an interview with FastCasual. "Their company is an acclaimed hospitality group in the Middle East with experience in the fast casual industry and we look forward to working with them to bring Dickey's to the Middle East."
Dickey's chose the Middle East because of its heavy boom in commerce and hospitality.
"Dubai and Abu Dhabi particularly are two very popular travel destinations that we look forward to expanding in," Dickey said.
Although the menu will be slightly different compared to the American units, it will, of course, include the chain's Texas-style barbecue.
"However, we have had to modify it appropriately due to the region we are expanding in,"Dickey said. "For example, pork is typically not consumed in the Middle East, because of this we plan to substitute our pork options for lamb."
Serenity Hospitality is led by CEO Youssef El Habbal, who has more than 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry with a heavy focus on concept development and franchise operations.
"At Serenity Hospitality, LLC we take pride in owning innovative Food and Beverage concepts. After doing much research of high-quality American brands, we found that Dickey's business model, menu options and future plans aligned perfectly with what we were looking for," El Habbal said in a company press release. "A company's values and heritage are extremely important to us, and Dickey's long family-owned history along with their promise to serve only the best food to their guests meet the values that we look for in a partner."
The 45 international Dickey's Barbecue Pit locations are slated to opened in seven countries throughout the Middle East, including United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman. The first locations are planned to open in 2018 in the UAE.