Quick service restaurant chain Pizza Hut is planning to expand rapidly across emerging smaller markets in India, according to a report by the Press Trust of India (PTI) through the Economic Times.

In the last two years, Pizza Hut doubled its locations to more than 820 stores across India. It is looking to continue with this “aggressive expansion” by increasing its presence across emerging smaller markets in the country.

Pizza Hut Indian Subcontinent managing director Merrill Pereyra noted that the move aims to tap ‘Gen Z’ and a growing middle class with greater buying power.

This expansion will target markets across tier II and III cities, which currently account for nearly half of the restaurant’s business in the country.

By opening new stores in these emerging markets, Pizza Hut aims to further tap into the already existing potential. The number of stores to be opened was not disclosed.

PTI quoted Pereyra as saying: “In the last two years, we have doubled our estate. We have gone from 417 restaurants to 820. We plan to keep that expansion going. We believe in the country.”

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He continued: “We have been here for 25 years and we want to keep growing. We will keep growing and there is no reason to slow down.”

Last month, Yum China opened its 3,000th Pizza Hut store in China, located in Qinhuangdao, Hebei province.

The store’s menu offers pizzas, steaks, pasta, rice dishes, entrees, appetisers, beverages and desserts.