Dunkin’ Donuts to Open 1,400 Restaurants in China

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Dunkin’ Brands Group Inc. entered a franchise agreement to add more than 1,400 Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants in China in the company’s largest development agreement ever.

A joint venture of Jollibee Foods Corp. and Jasmine Asset Holding Ltd. will open and operate the restaurants as franchisee, Canton, Massachusetts-based Dunkin’ said today in a statement. The first location may open in the fourth quarter.

Dunkin’, which also owns the Baskin-Robbins ice-cream chain, has been expanding since going public in 2011, announcing new locations in the U.S. West, Australia, Vietnam and Germany. The company already has 16 restaurants in China and more than 2,200 in its Asia Pacific region.

Jasmine is a subsidiary of RRJ Capital, an investment firm that focuses on China’s food and consumer industries. The firm has offices in Hong Kong and Singapore. Jollibee, based in Manila, runs its namesake, Chowking and Mang Inasal fast-food outlets.

Dunkin’ rose 0.8 percent to $43.89 at the close in New York. The shares fell 12 percent last year.

The company has more than 11,000 restaurants in 36 countries.