US-based Restaurant Brands International’s (RBI) fast-food chain Popeyes has signed an exclusive master franchise and development agreement with a subsidiary of Silla Group to open hundreds of restaurants across South Korea.

Silla Group is a South Korean conglomerate that operates across several verticals, including in the food and beverage (F&B) restaurant space.

Silla Group F&B division senior managing director MoonKyung Lee said: “Chicken is one of the largest and fastest-growing categories in the South Korean quick-service restaurant (QSR) segment. We are proud to bring the famous Popeyes brand to South Korea and we believe that our guests will love Popeyes iconic Chicken Sandwich.

“Popeyes is an exciting addition to the Silla Group’s F&B portfolio and is expected to become one of the key drivers of growth for us. It will also contribute significantly to the economy by creating hundreds of new jobs over the coming years.”

Established in New Orleans in 1972, Popeyes is a chicken QSR with more than 3,600 restaurants in over 25 countries.

Its menu offers chicken sandwiches, spicy chicken, chicken tenders, fried shrimp and other regional items.

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The first Silla Group subsidiary Popeyes restaurant in South Korea is scheduled to open this year.

RBI president David Shear said: “We are thrilled to launch Popeyes with the Silla Group subsidiary. We have strong confidence in the group and are pleased to announce exciting plans to bring our iconic Louisiana-style chicken to one of the largest chicken QSR markets in the world.

“Our entry illustrates our commitment to serving more guests around the world and the execution of our growth plans for the Asia Pacific region.”

To offer a seamless guest experience to customers, Popeyes intends to bring digital innovation to its restaurants across South Korea.

Its restaurants will be equipped with digital ordering screens and also offer mobile ordering along with delivery services.

The agreement with the South Korean conglomerate is part of RBI’s plan to expand the Popeyes brand globally.

Last year, agreements were signed to introduce the brand into the UK, Romania, France and India, as well as to expand its presence in Mexico and Saudi Arabia.

In another development, salad restaurant chain Sweetgreen has announced the launch of a $10 subscription service in the US.

The subscription service, called Sweetpass, will be available for purchase online.

The Sweetpass will provide customers with $3 off their orders and can be used once every day within 30 days of its validity. Sweetpass will be available from 3 January to 16 January in a pilot across 150 US locations.