Burger King Is Hungry Jack’s in Australia. What Will Wendy’s Be?

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Neither company responded to a request for comment.

The American Wendy’s might still face some pushback from local consumers, especially if Australian franchisees felt they were getting a bad deal, Mr. Terry, of the University of Sydney, said. “Nothing drives the patriotism of the Australians like the big boys from overseas coming in and riding roughshod over everything,” he said.

Similar issues have bedeviled other American fast-food companies looking to the Australian market.

In 1981, Taco Bell (in the United States) clashed with a company by the same name in Sydney’s Bondi Beach area. (The American outfit lost.) Then in 2021, it reached a legal settlement with an Australian Mexican restaurant, Taco Bill. And in Sydney, a company called Down N’ Out Burger was forced to change its name to High N’ Dry in 2020, after years of legal wrangling with the West Coast fast food chain In-N-Out.

It’s not just restaurants creating confusion. An Australian home goods company — Target — has no relation to the American big box retailer of the same name, despite having identical branding, bull’s-eye logos and similar stock.

For Mr. Cowin, of Hungry Jack’s, the news dredged up memories from the early 1980s, when Wendy’s last tried to plant its flag in Australia.

“What they don’t mention is that they’ve been here before,” Mr. Cowin told the Australian Financial Review on Monday. At the time, he had been the victor, swooping in to purchase 11 Wendy’s restaurants after the company left Australia in 1985. He closed two stores and converted nine others into Hungry Jack’s outlets.

Naming rights aside, the Australian market was still harder to break into than it might appear. “A lot of these companies come in thinking Australia is the 51st state of the United States, because we speak the same language,” he said, adding: “It’s going to be tough for anyone starting from scratch.”



Source : Nytimes