Cheesecake Factory Expands into Middle East

United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will get American-style cheesecake courtesy of a licensing agreement between the Kuwait-based Alshaya group of companies and The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated.

22 restaurants will be opened over the next five years. Mohammed Alshaya, Chairman of the retail division of Alshaya said:

“We continuously ask consumers in the Middle East to tell us which U.S.-based casual dining restaurants they want most in their local markets. The Cheesecake Factory is always at the top of the list. We are delighted to be the company’s initial licensee to develop and operate this outstanding restaurant concept internationally.”

The Cheesecake Factory launched in 1978 and now operates 163 restaurants in the U.S., including 149 restaurants under The Cheesecake Factory® mark; 13 restaurants under the Grand Lux Cafe® mark; and one restaurant under the RockSugar Pan Asian Kitchen® mark.

The Cheesecake Factory also operates two bakery production facilities in Calabasas Hills, CA and Rocky Mount, NC that produce over 70 varieties of quality cheesecakes and other baked products.

The Alshaya group of companies is a privately owned family business, which was founded in Kuwait in 1890. Through its retail division, Alshaya is a leading international franchise operator for over 55 of the world’s most recognized retail brands including Starbucks, Dean & Deluca, H&M, Mothercare, Debenhams, American Eagle, Pottery Barn, P.F.Chang’s, Pinkberry, Office Depot and Boots.

Texas Roadhouse, Potbelly and Shake Shack are also to be introduced to the ME market by Alshaya. The company operates 2,000 stores in 15 markets across the Middle East, North Africa, Turkey, Cyprus, Russia, Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. It employs more than 20,000 people from over 80 nationalities.

Photos: David Overton, Chairman & CEO of The Cheesecake Factory, and Mohammed Alshaya, Chairman of the retail division of Alshaya, plus items from the Cheesecake Factory menu.

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