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Fresh from Yum Brands, the new CEO of the Wendy's brand has big burger plans. Wendy's will add better burgers and pull customers from the fast casual restaurant market by essentially beefing up its old "barbell" pricing strategy of adding high-priced while simultaneously pushing low-priced items.
Better burgers: Brolick said the new Dave's Hot 'N Juicy burgers had "exceeded our expectations" and would help Wendy's reclaim its "leadership in the premium-quality hamburger category."
Emil Brolick, who joined Wendy's as CEO less than two months ago, said in a call with analysts that he was focused on beating a relatively new crop of competitors of "fast-casual" brands like Five Guys and Smashburger."… "I'm not for the moment suggesting that we want to try to pretend to become a Five Guys or a Smashburger or something like that," Brolick said on a call with analysts. " But I do believe that there is a significant opportunity in the marketplace for higher-quality products that are fresh, made-to-order products." [via Wall Street Journal]
Besides its new high-end Dave's burgers that it has just introduced, Wendy's will also roll out a new mid-tier "W" line of cheeseburgers later this month. It also plans to expand the number of restaurants that will offer breakfast. But its chief executive told investors that for competitive reasons he will not provide an ongoing report on how many outlets are coming on board with breakfast.
International expansion: Having only 300 international restaurants out of the brand's total of 6,600, Wendy's isn't much of an international player. The new CEO wants to change that. After multiple failures, Wendy's will try to crack open a Japanese market that has virtually shut out the burger chain time and time again. Only the U.S. has more franchise owners of all kinds than Japan, the world's second largest franchise market. Brolick says that the franchising company sees some thousand outlets outside the U.S. in the future if international companies live up to their commitments.