The Blackburn German Doner Kebab (GDK) site will be one of 47 new GDK restaurants to open by the end of 2021.

The fast-casual chain said it plans to almost double its network of stores to nearly 100 sites, with the expansion plans set to create 1,800 jobs.

Bosses at the chain have said they will also expand into Manchester, Newcastle, Huddersfield, Stockport, Stirling, and additional sites in London and Glasgow.

Interior work at a new Blackburn German Doner Kebab (GDK) restaurant is set to be completed next month. Work on the site in Eanam started in September with the exterior walls being demolished.

A glass frontage has now been installed on the building which will also include a spiral staircase leading up to a wedding hall and events venue on the second floor. This will be run separately from the GDK restaurant.

German Doner Kebab, which started 2021 with 52 UK restaurants, said the accelerated expansion comes after a resilient year which saw it open 12 restaurants despite pandemic restrictions. It said its latest expansion plans will be led by Rich Collie, who recently joined from Nando’s as the company’s head of project management.

In 2020, same-store sales jumped by 51% as it was buoyed by takeaway and delivery sales during lockdown periods.

Imran Sayeed, chief executive officer of the business, said: “We have been extremely agile during the pandemic and there continues to be a huge demand for our game-changing kebabs.

“It is therefore very exciting to be announcing these latest growth plans for the next 12 months as we build on the great momentum we delivered during 2020.

“Our plans will almost double our portfolio and create in the region of 1,800 jobs as we continue to disrupt the market space and maintain our mission of building the fast-casual brand of the future.”

Lancashire Telegraph:

The Glasgow-based business has 76 global restaurants and is looking to open more sites in the US, Canada, Saudi Arabia and Ireland.

“The global demand reflects our position as one of the world’s most exciting fast-casual brands,” Mr Sayeed added.

“We have developed strong franchise relationships in key global locations and we are now working closely with our partners to take forward development plans and bring the German Doner Kebab experience to new regions.”