Fast-food giants want pizza the action in Africa

Story highlights

U.S. fast food brands are increasingly opening branches across Africa

KFC has outlets in 14 African countries, with over 700 KFCs in South Africa

Pizza chain Domino's plans three more African branches by the end of this year

African branches often introduce new dishes to cater to local tastes

CNN  — 

Sub-Saharan Africa’s economic renaissance is fueling an investment drive by fast food joints looking to tap the continent’s growing middle class.

The likes of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) and Domino’s pizza are opening up in African growth markets from Nigeria to Angola to give consumers a taste of U.S. cuisine.

Elias Schulze, managing partner of The Africa Group, a boutique Africa-focused investment consultancy, said U.S. takeout stores are rapidly becoming “aspirational brands” for cosmopolitan Africans with disposable income.

He said: “An upwardly mobile, confident, Western-leaning and young consumer class bodes well for an American burger boom.”

And the battle for the African market is well underway. This year, Yum! Brands – owner of KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut – is expanding into Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

The Louisville-based restaurant giant already has outlets in 14 African countries, with more than 700 KFCs in South Africa and plans to open a further 45 stores in 2013.