From Madrid to Guadalajara: Popeyes’ fresh and ‘low cost’ chicken expands with the aim of opening 200 stores

The company will open between 25 and 30 restaurants during 2021 after closing a year marked by Covid.

Ignacio Sedano, CEO of Popeyes in Spain

They could have chosen Barcelona, ​​but they opted for Badajoz and Guadalajara to open the first two franchises of Popeyes in our country, which are added to the nine own stores they have in Madrid and one in Valencia. In total, 12 premises that are part of a plan that, after the difficult moments of the pandemic, are returning strongly and with the goal of opening 200 restaurants in five years, as it progresses Ignacio Sedano, CEO of Popeyes in Spain in an interview in Invertia.

But first, little by little. “We are already working on the expansion plan for next year. In 2021 we want to open a minimum of between 20 and 25 owned and franchised stores”, recognize. The idea is to grow with both formats, but with franchisees who sign a development contract for at least five restaurants so that “together we can make Popeyes reach 200 restaurants without problems in five years,” he details.

Where will we see this strong expansion? “Madrid, Valencia, Badajoz and Guadalajara are enough for many more Popeyes, but next year we will start to be in new locations,” says the manager. Although it does not reveal where they will be located, it does advance that they have “half of the development plan signed and five development contracts signed with franchisees for 2021.”

A year in Spain

Popeyes, owned by Restaurant Brands Iberia (master franchisor of Burger King and Tim Hortons), landed in Spain a year ago, more specifically on November 21 in Madrid. He did it with some adaptations.

We saw that in Spain it was important to work in a more healthy with grilled chicken, we had to lower the touch of spiciness in some products and we adapted the menu to the Spanish consumer”, recalls the general manager.

They also had to adapt to the restrictions set by the Covid. Not only for the security measures, but for entering the world of delivery. They closed on March 13 and in 15 days they had this channel ready to sell through platforms such as Uber Eats and Glovo.

This channel has been so important that it accounts for between 25% and 30% of the total sales of Popeyes, which will close this 2020 above one million euros. “In the average of the fast food sector”, affirms the general director of the chain.


What hasn’t changed is their philosophy, which is precisely what sets them apart from competitors like KFC. Its secret recipe of seven spices gives the differential flavor to the chicken, which is then marinated for 12 hours and prepared and coated by hand. This process ensures that the product is always crisp on the outside.

The chicken is sold in three formats: hamburger, chicken with bone and the tenders. “You can eat from 4 euros up to 10 euros or also share menus for 14 and 15 euros, they are very cheap”, he explains. “We are fast food, but we want to offer one more point,” he says.

For this Christmas they have launched a new hamburger and a dessert that will be on the menu for three months. But they are already working to bring more novelties like the rest of Popeyes products in other markets to Spain. “We are going to build a differentiated base of accessories in the sector,” he says.

Founded in New Orleans in 1972, the specialty chicken chain has more than 45 years of experience in the sector and more than 3,300 restaurants in 25 countries. Popeyes food is inspired by its city of origin, with typical flavors of Louisiana, where it is cooked respecting the richness and mixture of flavors inherited from its multicultural history.