Pollo Tropical has announced the opening of its third franchised restaurant in Caracas, Venezuela, at the Sambil Shopping Center, the fourth-largest mall in South America. This is the third in a 10-unit development agreement with Restaurantes Internacionales C.A. The Venezuelan-based franchisee has opened two other Pollo Tropical restaurants in Barquisimeto and Punto Fijo since 2010.
The new Caracas Pollo Tropical location seats 100 customers and serves the brand's signature flame-grilled chicken, roast pork, guava barbecue ribs and made-from-scratch side dishes. In Venezuela, the brand also offers, as a side dish, arepitas, a small flatbread made of corn masa, which is popular in the region. The restaurant's signature "salsa bar" also features the popular and flavorful Venezuelan guasacaca, an avocado relish.
"Venezuela is one of Latin America's largest economies so it makes sense that we would partner with a strong restaurant operator to build out this Pollo Tropical market quickly," said Marc Mushkin, senior vice president of International Development at Pollo Tropical. "Our franchise partner has opened three restaurants in little more than a year and they are on track to open more very soon. Partnering with quality restaurant operations to build the brand's presence in a timely fashion is an integral part of our overall expansion strategy."
Pollo Tropical, part of the Fiesta Restaurant Group, also is targeting franchise territories in Canada, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico and the Caribbean, to continue its expansion. The company already has initiatives underway in the UK, India and other key Asian markets.
Florida zoos partnership
Pollo Tropical also announced that it will offer free Create Your Own Family Meals to support zoos within the state of Florida this summer. Anyone who joins or renews a family-category zoo membership (or above) at Zoo Miami, Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens or Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo, will receive a free Pollo Tropical Create Your Own Family Meal, complete with a whole marinated grilled chicken, four rolls and choice of any two sides. The offer is valued at more than $16 and is valid through June 30.
The zoo memberships are valid for one year and include unlimited zoo admission, invitations to members-only events and previews, gift shop discounts, educational programs, summer camp discounts, free subscriptions to zoo magazines and more.
"Families are among our biggest fans at Pollo Tropical. We are always finding new, affordable ways for our guests to play and eat together as a family. Much like our family meals, zoo memberships are some of the best family deals around," said Danny Meisenheimer, chief brand officer for Pollo Tropical.