The Indian arm of US-based Burger King filed for a local initial public offering (IPO) to raise up to 4 billion rupees ($56.6 million). Photo: File

INTERNATIONAL - The Indian arm of US-based Burger King filed for a local initial public offering (IPO) to raise up to 4 billion rupees ($56.6 million) on Monday, as it looks to open more restaurants in a country where international fast-food brands are gaining in popularity.

The Whopper Burger maker, which launched its first restaurant in India in 2014, competes directly with market leader McDonald’s Corp and other restaurant chains such as Domino’s Pizza.

Burger King India Ltd plans to have 325 stores by December 31, 2020, up from 202 as of June. McDonald’s had 470 at last count, according to data by consulting firm Technopak Advisors.

In the year ended March 2019, Burger King India’s revenue from operations had risen 67 percent to 6.33 billion rupees ($89.4 million).

Its loss narrowed to 382.8 million rupees in the same period from 822.3 million rupees a year earlier.

“Burger King is going with a national franchise instead of regional ones, and that gives them more control and potentially better growth,” Technopak Chairman Arvind Singhal said.

The company plans to use 2.9 billion rupees of the money raised to open new restaurants, according to the company’s IPO papers.

The issue includes an offer for sale of up to 60 million equity shares by QSR Asia PTE, which owns 99 percent of the Indian entity. The company did not disclose pricing details.

Private equity firm Everstone Capital, which operates Burger King India, is considering a private placement of shares worth 1.5 billion rupees ahead of the IPO, according to the draft red herring prospectus.

The company will look to list with the Bombay Stock Exchange as well as the National Stock Exchange.

Kotak Mahindra Capital, CLSA India, Edelweiss Financial Services and JM Financial are lead managers of the IPO.

Reuters