FAT Brands has signed a 22-unit development deal with Global Vita USA to expand its franchised restaurant network in Iraq.

Under the agreement, 12 Fatburger and Buffalo’s Express co-branded locations will be opened across Iraq outside the Kurdistan region over the next five years.

The first units are expected open in 2024.

Fatburger and Buffalo’s Express menu includes bone-in and boneless chicken wings and a range of original sauces.

The agreement also includes the opening of ten Great American Cookies and Marble Slab Creamery co-branded locations by 2028, with the first locations set to open next year.

FAT Brands chief development officer Taylor Wiederhorn said: “With four units already operating in the Kurdistan region, Fatburger has established a strong following in the country.

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“Now, as we look to further expand the brand with Global Vita USA, we can reach even more fans that crave our all-American, custom-built burgers.

“This is new territory for Great American Cookies, Marble Slab Creamery and Buffalo’s Express, however, the brands have had a presence in the Middle East for some time, so this is a natural progression for the concepts to strengthen their foothold in the region.”

In April 2023, FAT Brands opened its first brick-and-mortar Johnny Rockets location in Abu Dhabi, UAE.