Luckin Coffee plans expansion into India, Middle East

China’s Luckin Coffee wants to expand into India and the Middle East.

The company has signed a memorandum of understanding to create a joint venture with Kuwait-based Americana Group which will open stores across the Greater Middle East and India. No further details have been released, according to Reuters.

Luckin, which sells coffee by app from a fast-growing network of stores and pick-up points across China’s main cities, raised US$561 million by listing in the US in May. It says it will open 2500 stores this year. 

Americana Group operates 1800 restaurants and 29 restaurants and food factories in the Middle East. It has franchises for a raft of fast-food and quick-service restaurant brands including KFC, TGI Fridays, Pizza Hut, Hardees, Baskin Robbins, Costa Coffee, Krispy Kreme, Red Lobster, Grand Cafe, Maestro, Longhorn Steakhouse and Chicken Tikka. 

It operates in 20 markets and boasts a payroll of 60,000. Besides the Middle East, the company has KFC and Pizza Hut stores in Kazakhstan and KFC stores in Morocco. 

“This collaboration represents Luckin Coffee’s first step toward bringing its leading products from China to the world,” said Luckin Coffee founder and CEO Jenny Qian Zhiya in a statement.

Earlier this month, the hitherto coffee-focused company announced it would launch a tea brand, Xiaolu.

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