Fast food chain and franchisor BurgerFuel Worldwide announced today that it has opened its largest store ever, in the capital city of Saudi Arabia.

The store in Riyadh - which has a population of about 7 million - is capable of catering for more than 250 customers, the company said in a statement.

To meet local cultural needs, the store is split in half so that families dine on one side and bachelors on the other.

BurgerFuel already had stores in the country, operated by local Master Licence holders Abdullah Fouad.


Head of BurgerFuel Josef Roberts said in a recent television interview that "the Middle East has proven to be a good move for us and we still have a lot of potential in this region".

The company has seen profits recently lift 102 per cent in the region and the new store's opening day sales broke the company record.

"We are very excited about what we are achieving in the Middle East and what is still to come," Roberts said.

The New Zealand company now has 10 stores in the Middle East, across the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Iraq - with stores in Egypt and Qatar due to open in 2013.

Last month, it signed a master licence agreement for Kuwait with Al Khayyat Investments (AKI).

BurgerFuel is listed on the New Zealand stock exchange and shares are currently trading at $1.15, down from its May peak at $1.20 but well above 40 cents a year ago. The shares were floated at $1 in 2007.