The U.S. fast food chain Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) has denied reports it has opened a branch in Iran.
In a statement issued following an inquiry
by the Persian Service of the BBC, KFC says that it will take legal action against individuals or companies that take advantage of the brand in Iran. The statement also says that that the company has no plans to open a restaurant in Iran.
Last week, Iranian news websites reported
that the first Iranian franchise of KFC had been opened in Karaj and more outlets were soon to be opened in Tehran and other major cities.
The hard-line Fars news agency, which broke the story, later removed the news item claiming, "The first branch of KFC opened in Iran with the goal of creating 20 000 jobs."
The CEO of the so-called Iranian KFC, Amir Hossein Alizadeh, was quoted as saying
that his fast-food restaurant was opened after obtaining permission "from the mother company." However, he added that his franchise was "100 percent Iranian and not American."
At the press conference, Alizadeh appeared with the KFC logo of Colonel Sanders
, and the signature red color of the chain, on the backdrop.
For now it seems that Iranian fans of fried chicken will have to look elsewhere.