ATLANTA (AP) — Wendy's is relaunching its fast-food chain in Japan, with plans to open its first restaurant in Tokyo later this year.
Wendy's/Arby's Group Inc. said Wednesday that it has formed a joint venture with Japanese food importer and distributor Higa Industries Co, to develop and operate the chain in Japan. The two companies did not say how many restaurants are planned but said they plan to rapidly expand.
Wendy's used to operate Wendy's in Japan through a franchise agreement but decided in 2009 not to renew its agreement, which led to the closing of 71 restaurants.
Higa Industries is led by Ernest Higa, who owned and operated 180 Domino's Pizza stores in Japan before selling that business last year.
This is the first joint venture for Wendy's/Arby's International, a subsidiary of the Wendy's/Arby's Group.
Shares of Wendy's/Arby's rose 6 cents to $4.70 in afternoon trading. The company, based in Atlanta, is scheduled to report its quarterly results Thursday.