Central Asia is better known for its golden domes than the golden arches. Western fast food giants have failed to create much of a presence in the region, one of the few places left on the planet without a McDonald's or a Burger King. Yet, at least in Kazakhstan, fast food junkies can find some relief feasting on the calorie-rich delights at KFC or Pizza Hut.
Since 2008, Russia's Rostik Group has been selling Colonel Sanders' fried chicken at its KFC outlets in Almaty and Astana. The company’s rapid expansion has Sanders grinning down from billboards around Almaty. The same company is also behind the appearance of Pizza Hut in Kazakhstan.
Rostik Group is credited with bringing the franchise concept to the former Soviet Union. Founded in the 1990s by the extravagantly named Rostislav Ordovsky-Tanayevsky Blanco, who was born in Venezuela to Russian and Spanish parents, the group has extensive business interests in Russia and beyond.
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