Scotland-based fast-casual gourmet kebab chain German Doner Kebab, owned by the Hero Brands group, plans to open 78 new restaurants in the UK this year.

The move is expected to create nearly 3,000 new employment opportunities across the country.

The company currently has a workforce of more than 3,500 people.

German Doner Kebab CEO Imran Sayeed said: “We have been extremely agile during the pandemic, listening to the needs of our customers and responding to the huge demand for our game-changing kebabs.

“This has enabled us to build greater levels of brand awareness and customer loyalty as we bring the German Doner Kebab experience to more cities and towns throughout the UK.”

The brand intends to open its restaurants at various locations, including Leeds, Portsmouth, Brighton, Great Yarmouth, Stoke and Aberdeen. The growth plan will also include additional sites in London and Glasgow.

Following this expansion, the company’s store count across the UK will total 170.

The brand is said to have opened 39 new restaurants last year, despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

In addition to its UK locations, German Doner Kebab operates more than 80 restaurants across the globe and intends to open 11 restaurants in North America, as well as its first store in Saudi Arabia, this year.

The restaurant chain is said to have a development pipeline of 350 sites planned for the next seven years.

In August 2020, German Doner Kebab signed deals with multi-franchise partners for the development of its new units in Saudi Arabia and Canada.