Kenny Rogers Roasters
"For Deliciously Healthy Food."
|Number of locations||156 (Worldwide) |
|Area served||Malaysia; Philippines; China; Indonesia; Singapore; Bangladesh; Brunei|
|Website||kennyrogersroasters.com (International); krr.com.my (Malaysia); kennys.com.ph (Philippines)|
Kenny Rogers Roasters is a brand which covers a chain of chicken-based restaurants. It was founded in 1991 by country musician Kenny Rogers and John Y. Brown, Jr., who was former governor of the U.S. state of Kentucky. John Y. Brown Jr. had also been an investor in Kentucky Fried Chicken from 1964 to 1971.
The menu of Kenny Rogers Roasters was originally centered on wood-fired rotisserie chicken. After closing all of its US operations and a series of ownership changes, Kenny Rogers Roasters now operates principally in Asia and is now part of Malaysian conglomerate Berjaya Corporation Berhad. The Kenny Rogers Roasters brand comes under a worldwide franchise owned by Kenny Rogers Roasters International Corporation, a subsidiary of Roasters Asia Pacific (Cayman) Limited which itself is ultimately owned by Berjaya Corporation Berhad.
In 1991, Country singer/songwriter Kenny Rogers ventured into the fast-food business and co-founded Kenny Rogers Roasters with former governor of Kentucky John Y. Brown, Jr. Kenny Rogers Roasters opened its first restaurant in Coral Springs, Florida in August 1991.
By 1995, the menu had expanded to include turkey, ribs, and various side dishes, and the chain had grown to over 350 restaurants, including locations in Canada, the Middle East, and Asia. The establishment became so well known an entire episode of Seinfeld ("The Chicken Roaster") was dedicated to Kramer's love of Kenny Rogers Roasters chicken which started after he and Jerry Seinfeld switched apartments due to a bright red neon light shining through Kramer's window so he couldn't sleep.
Roasters immediately found itself in competition with Boston Chicken (later known as Boston Market) and several smaller roasted chicken chains. Kentucky Fried Chicken also introduced a roasted chicken line of products called Rotisserie Gold to compete with Roasters and Boston Chicken. In December 1992, Clucker's, a smaller player in the roasted chicken market, sued Kenny Rogers Roasters, claiming the chain had copied its recipes and menus. The lawsuit continued until Roasters purchased a majority stake in Cluckers in August 1994. Brown expanded it to a chain of more than 425 restaurants before selling his interest in the franchise to the Malaysia-based Berjaya Group in 1996.
The company entered Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March 1998 and was bought by Nathan's Famous, Inc. for US$1.25 million (US$2 million in more recent terms) on 1 April 1999; as a result of restructuring, many locations closed. By 2000, the chain was down to 90 franchised restaurants, 40 of those in the United States.
Nathan's Famous divested itself of the chain in 2008, selling it to their Asian franchiser - Roasters Asia Pacific (Cayman) Limited, a company which is owned by Berjaya Group of Malaysia. The last Kenny Rogers Roasters operating in the United States was located in the Ontario Mills mall in Ontario, California; it closed on December 31, 2011.
The 2008 purchase agreement allowed for Nathan's Famous and Miami Subs to continue selling Kenny Rogers Roasters items in their restaurants. Nathan's continues to serve Kenny Rogers Roasters items in select locations, such as its flagship location on Coney Island, Miami Subs (since sold off by Nathan's) no longer has a "Kenny Rogers" section on their menu.
Despite the chain's end in the United States, Kenny Rogers Roasters continues to flourish in Asia under the ownership of Berjaya Group. An article published by Time.com in 2011 reported that Kenny Rogers Roasters had grown to almost 140 restaurants across Asia, with continued expansion in Malaysia, the Philippines, and more recently southern China.
In Malaysia, the Kenny Rogers Roasters chain of restaurants is developed and operated by Berjaya Roasters (M) Sdn Bhd. Under a corporate exercise by Berjaya Corporation Berhad in 2011, Berjaya Roasters (M) Sdn Bhd became a wholly owned subsidiary of Berjaya Food Berhad.
In March 2011, Berjaya Food Berhad listed on the Main Board of Bursa Malaysia. Effectively, Berjaya Food Berhad is responsible for the establishment, operation and expansion of Kenny Rogers Roasters restaurants in Malaysia. This includes the development of the Kenny Rogers Roasters brand, management of menu items and acting as central procurement agent for Kenny Rogers Roasters restaurants across Malaysia.
Kenny Rogers Roasters started operations in Bangladesh in December 2012 with 1 restaurant in Gulshan, Dhaka. The company has signed an agreement to open an outlet at Jamuna Future Park (an upcoming mall), with other outlets on the way.
Restaurant Concept and Menu
As a brand, Kenny Rogers Roasters advocates healthy eating as reflected in its brand tag line “less fat...less salt...less calories”.
Kenny Rogers Roasters restaurants offer a casual dining environment with rotisserie roasted chicken as the main core item, while complemented by a variety of hot and cold side dishes. These dishes include muffins, jacket potatoes, vegetable salads, pastas, soups, desserts and beverages.
Fresh chickens are marinated with citrus, herbs and spices. Then they are slowly turning over a rotisserie fire, allowing fat to escape, while sealing in the roasted flavor.
Number of Restaurants and Countries of Operation
In its 2012 Annual Report, Berjaya Corporation Berhad reported that as at 30 April 2012, Kenny Rogers Roasters restaurants numbered 74 in Malaysia and 8 in Indonesia.
It was also mentioned that the countries in which Roasters Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Limited have operations include the United States of America, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, China and the Philippines.
In addition, Roasters Asia Pacific had also been undergoing expansion in other international territories which include India and the Middle East. In 2013, Kenny Rogers Roasters opened its first outlet in Brunei.
KRR Community Chest Campaign
KRR Community Chest is an umbrella name for a series of charitable campaigns organized by Berjaya Roasters (M) Sdn Bhd. It was created in 2005 to aid the less fortunate in Malaysia. Some of the beneficiaries over the years have included the National Kidney Foundation of Malaysia, Tabung Kebajikan Pesakit HUKM, Pediatric Unit HUKM (Oncology), Yayasan Sunbeams Home, Rumah Juara, Rumah Kanak-kanak Tengku Budriah, Rumah Sayangan, Rumah Hope, Rumah Kebajikan Anbu Illam, Rumah Charis, Ti-Ratana Welfare Society, and Tabung Kebajikan Pesakit PPUKM - Young Diabetic Patients.
Roasters Chicken Run, a key initiative under the KRR Community Chest, is an annual event to raise money for various charities in Malaysia. Participants include Kenny Rogers Roasters employees and members of the public and will run a predesignated route for charity. However unlike normal runs, they will have to balance an egg on a cone while running. Part of the proceeds raised will then be contributed to pre-selected charities.
Another initiative under KRR Community Chest is the Wishing Tree Campaign, which was setup in 2005 to meet the needs of underprivileged children in Malaysia. The Wishing Tree Campaign is held on November to December each year and aimed at bringing year-end joy to underprivileged children with gifts usually in the form of watches, school bags, uniforms and books.
A more recent initiative under the KRR Community Chest is known as the Roasters Scholarship Program. It was established in 2010 to provide assistance to needy students to pursue a Bachelors Degree in Hospitality Management (Honours) at the Berjaya University College of Hospitality. On completion of the course, candidates also have the opportunity to pursue a career at Kenny Rogers Roasters upon completion of the course.
Awards and Recognition
Kenny Rogers Roasters has been a recipient of the following awards:
- American's Choice Award for the Best Chicken Chain by Restaurants and Institutions Magazine for three consecutive years (1996, 1997 & 1998).
- Master Franchisee of the Year by the Malaysian Franchise Association for two consecutive periods (2000/2001 and 2002/2003) and also for 2009.
- The BrandLaureate Award for Best Brands in Food & Beverage in 2011 and 2012.
- Roasters Asia Pacific also received the Asia Pacific International Honesty Enterprise - Keris Award for 2006 and 2007.
- "Branches". Philippines: Kenny Rogers Roasters. Retrieved 2009-11-03.
- "Berjaya Group Berhad - Group Structures - Food & Beverages". Berjaya Group. 2009-09-08. Retrieved 2009-11-03.[dead link]
- "Berjaya Corporation Berhad - Food & Beverage Division". berjaya.com. Retrieved 2013-08-09.
- "About Kenny Rogers Roasters: The Beginning". Kenny Rogers Roasters International. Retrieved 2013-08-13.
- Stouffer, "A High Stakes Game of Chicken"
- Seline, "Clucker's is First Casualty in Chicken Wars"
- Hutt, "Kenny Rogers Wants to Take Name with Him from Bankrupt Roaster Chain"
- Katherine Hutt (March 28, 1998). "Roasters Lays an Egg, Files for Chapter 11". South Florida Sun-Sentinel (sun-sentinel.com). Retrieved 2010-12-16.
- Frumkin, Paul (March 27, 2000). "Nathan's is red-hot for growth, serves up diversity with new brands". Nation's Restaurant News. New York City: Lebhar-Friedman, Inc. Retrieved 2009-11-03.
- "Nathan's Bid Up For Vote". South Florida Sun-Sentinel (Sun-Sentinel.com). January 6, 1999. Retrieved 2010-12-16.
- Kenny Rogers Roasters Purchase Agreement, TechAgreements. Retrieved on 2009-06-29
- Ontario Mills' Big Food gets much, much smaller John Plessel, insidesocal.com, December 31, 2011
- Section 2.13(a) of Kenny Rogers Roasters Purchase Agreement, TechAgreements. Retrieved on 2009-06-29
- Section 2.13(c) of Kenny Rogers Roasters Purchase Agreement, TechAgreements. Retrieved on 2009-06-29
- Dinner at Kenny Rogers Roasters on Coney Island. Fast Food NYC. Retrieved on 2009-06-29.
- Miami Subs Grill Menu via Miami Subs website. Last updated 18 November 2008. Retrieved 2009-11-03.
- Brenhouse, Hillary (26 July 2011). "The Secret Second Life of Kenny Rogers Roasters … in Asia". Time.com.
- "Kenny Rogers ROASTERS Malaysia". krr.com.my. Retrieved 2013-08-09.
- "Kenny Rogers Roasters Philippines". Kennys.com.ph. Retrieved 2010-06-14.
- "Berjaya Food Berhad". berjaya.com. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
- "Kenny Rogers Roasters Menu". Berjaya Roasters (M) Sdn Bhd. Retrieved 2013-08-13.
- "Berjaya Corporation Berhad - 2012 Annual Report (p24-25)". Berjaya Corporation Berhad. Retrieved 2013-08-20.
- "Kenny Rogers Roasters Opens Outlet in Giant, Rimba". The Brunei Times. 2013-3-15. Retrieved 2013-09-11.
- "Run to Bring Smiles to Kids". TheStar Online. 2008-06-21. Retrieved 2013-08-09.
- "KRR Community Activities". krr.com.my. Retrieved 2013-08-09.
- "Roasters Chicken Run returns Run for charity while balancing an egg on a cone". TheStar Online. 7 June 2013. Retrieved 2013-08-09.
- "KRR Fetes Ractar Kids". New Straits Times. 2011-12-23. Retrieved 2013-08-12.
- "50 Kids get their Wishes Fulfilled". New Straits Times. 2012-12-19. Retrieved 2013-08-12.
- "ROASTERS Scholarship Launched for the First Time". Study Malaysia. 2010-03-24. Retrieved 2013-08-12.
- "Kenny Rogers Roasters Brand Laureate Award". The BrandLaureate Awards. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
- "Roasters AP Keris Award". Kenny Rogers International. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
- Kenny Rogers Roasters International
- Kenny Rogers ROASTERS Malaysia
- Berjaya Corporation Berhad
- Kenny Rogers Roasters Philippines