US-based Korean fried chicken brand Bonchon looks to take flight in UK

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

US-based Korean fried chicken brand Bonchon looks to take flight in UK

Related tags Fried chicken QSR US chain Bonchon Franchise Fast food Christie & co

US-based Korean fried chicken chain Bonchon has partnered with property adviser Christie & Co to bring its fast-expanding concept to the UK.

Christie & Co will be seeking an experienced hospitality entrepreneur to become the UK master franchisee who can secure sites of between 1,500 to 2,500sq ft and develop an initial estate of 15 locations nationally within five years.

Founded in Busan, South Korea in 2002 by Jinduk Seo and established in New York City in 2006, Bonchon currently has more than 420 worldwide sites in operation with over 140 in the USA and international sites located in the Philippines, Thailand, France, Singapore, Cambodia, Myanmar, and Vietnam.

“Chicken-led QSR brands are performing well throughout the UK and we see Bonchon as a welcome addition to the landscape,” says Simon Chaplin, senior director of pubs, restaurants and franchise at Christie & Co.

“Once again the power of an international partner with over 420 stores and dedicated experts to assist will help the franchisee develop a great business over the coming years.”

Bonchon is offering its future UK franchisee partner the opportunity to become the master franchisee for the UK with an option to sub-franchise after two years of operations.

Growth will be supported by the Korea-based team with design, specification, marketing, branding, training, menu R&D, and operations.

The Bonchon concept specialises in Korean comfort food and serves a menu of wings, drumsticks and boneless bites available to order alongside ‘signature’ sauces. It also offers a range of Asian fusion cuisine.

The handmade-to-order chicken is hand-brushed and double-fried to give it a distinctive ‘crunch out loud’ quality.

“We are excited to be working with Bonchon to bring their distinctive 'crunch’ to the UK,” adds Chaplin.

Bonchon has earned several accolades in the USA including being recognized by Business Insider​ as ‘the gold standard for fried chicken; and featuring on Entrepreneur​ magazine’s 2023 ‘Top 10 Hot Franchise Trends’ and ‘Top 12 Chicken Franchises to Buy’ lists.

In the US, same-store sales across the Bonchon estate were up 5% in 2022 – the fifth consecutive year of same-store sales growth – with average unit volumes at $1.7m.

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