Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why?

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senor boogie woogie
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2014/06/06 10:29:08 (permalink)

Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why?


I am looking around Wikipedia today, and looked up the Taco Bell entry. What is interesting about Taco Bell is that in almost every place outside the United States, the chain has been an utter failure, and closed up really quickly never to return.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taco_Bell
(Look at part 3, outside the United States)

Taco Bell failed completely in Australia, it's last stores left in 2005.

It is mostly gone in Canada, and their locations sold beer!

Failed in Greece.

India has two locations, probably mostly serving expats.

Failed in Mexico. Uh, no surprise there.

Poland, Russia, Singapore, United Arab Emerites, no luck. Taco Bell is not in Hong Kong as far as I know.

Basically a failure in the UK.

Not listed in the Wiki, but Taco Bell failed in China also. They were in Shanghai, Guangzhou and I believe Beijing. Ate at the one in Shanghai, but it was not like the ones in the USA, it was a sit down restaurant. Failed after a year. Note, Shanghai has a lot of expatriates and many foreign chains are in Shanghai. A lot of fast food companies start in Shanghai and then move from there. Taco Bell is a non starter.

Per the Wiki article....

Taco Bell is also present in the Dominican Republic, Guam, Aruba, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama and on AAFES military bases in Germany, Iraq, Guatemala,[73] and El Salvador.[74]

Taco Bell is present on Some American military bases worldwide, but it is restricted from non military personnel.

On the other hand, KFC is in about 110 nations. It is the fastest growing international chain. In China, they are killing McDonalds. In China there is also Burger King. However, unlike in the USA, Burger King rocks here, and is growing, but will never be at the rate of KFC or McDonalds.

KFC has done well in China because the company has given the local chain wide latitude to make their own products for local tastes. I can see why Taco Bell failed miserably in China. Probably the Taco Bell food is too weird for many tastes worldwide. Dunno. But Taco Bell has been a bummer on the international market. Any other theories?










#1

19 Replies Related Threads

    Foodbme
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/06 15:28:56 (permalink)
    Foreigner's, unlike Americans, have figured out their food is Garbage! 
    #2
    1bbqboy
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/06 15:51:07 (permalink)
    Why the Taco Bell obsession?
    #3
    Louis
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/06 18:42:34 (permalink)
    I think the reason is because the chain uses poor materials to create their products.  The company's products taste cheap.
     
    #4
    MellowRoast
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 09:00:52 (permalink)
    Never mind their lack of success overseas, I can't figure out why they're so popular here in the states.
    #5
    MetroplexJim
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 09:12:29 (permalink)
    I'm guessing that foreign governments outlaw the 'pink slime' that keeps Taco Bell's meat hoses running so smoothly in the U.S.
    #6
    JRPfeff
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 09:38:15 (permalink)
    Them foreigners just don't appreciate good food like us Mericans.
    #7
    EdSails
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 13:00:27 (permalink)
    MellowRoast

    Never mind their lack of success overseas, I can't figure out why they're so popular here in the states.

    Why so popular in the states? I can't figure out why they've got lines when they are two doors down from decent, true taquerias here in the heartland of quality Mexican food. And it amazes me to see lines of cars around the building in areas like Santa Ana, East L.A. and Oxnard where the majority of the population is of either recent or past Mexican heritage!
    " />
    #8
    NYPIzzaNut
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 13:26:13 (permalink)
    EdSails

    MellowRoast

    Never mind their lack of success overseas, I can't figure out why they're so popular here in the states.

    Why so popular in the states? I can't figure out why they've got lines when they are two doors down from decent, true taquerias here in the heartland of quality Mexican food. And it amazes me to see lines of cars around the building in areas like Santa Ana, East L.A. and Oxnard where the majority of the population is of either recent or past Mexican heritage!
    " />
    It is a truly sad state of affairs.  I look at the success of Domino's and other schlock crappy pizza purveyors and cringe seeing folks eating essentially garbage and having no clue what great pizza is about.

    #9
    rumaki
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 13:59:54 (permalink)
    I think the answer -- and many have said this before -- is that people are looking for familiarity and consistency. Especially these days when money is tight, some folks don't choose to take a chance on a mom and pop storefront taqueria that might, or might not, be good.  I remember having lunch at one in Santa Barbara when we were out there for a wedding some years ago.  The place looked really promising, but was absolutely vile. 
     
    I am not saying Taco Bell is good, although I can't really speak to it as I've  never eaten at one.  But you know what you are getting, and you know what it will cost.
     
    Remember, this is a site that attracts adventuresome eaters. Many people, for a variety of reasons, simply are not.  Or they have kids in tow who won't go anywhere but a fast food joint (at least, not happily).
     
    And I sometimes wonder whether some immigrants might choose to go to "American"-style fast food joints like Taco Bell as part of the process of assimilation?
     
       
    #10
    JRPfeff
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 14:06:35 (permalink)
    rumaki

    I think the answer -- and many have said this before -- is that people are looking for familiarity and consistency. Especially these days when money is tight, some folks don't choose to take a chance on a mom and pop storefront taqueria that might, or might not, be good....

    Well said.
     
    Fast, familiar and cheap about sums up the Taco Bell experience in the U.S.A.
     
    In other countries, Taco Bell won't be familiar and probably is fairly expensive compared to local offerings. That is not a formula for success.
    #11
    BackRhodes
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 14:07:39 (permalink)
    Most fast food advertisements you see on TV are for food like substances, not for real food. Many folks of a certain age these days have eaten ONLY at crappy fast food places, and don't know of any other kind...
     
    I'd rather take a chance on a mom & pop place...
    #12
    MellowRoast
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 14:28:49 (permalink)
    I think rumaki is on to something with the "familiarity and consistency."  I know lots of people who go on vacation and will eat at chains (instead of local spots) for those reasons.
    #13
    rumaki
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 14:42:54 (permalink)
    The state of Kentucky publishes a paperback tourist guidebook annually on places to visit, stay, etc. For every town that's listed, they include a variety of restaurants that are locally-based, and then have a separate listing, headlined "Familiar Food," which is all the usual fast food suspects.
    #14
    mlm
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 15:11:37 (permalink)
    Although, I would jump at the chance to try something new or special on a trip, let's face it. There are many children and adults who will not, or feel or know that they can't for dietary reasons,ect, eat what they aren't accustomed to.  Therefore they either have to find a way to cook for themselves or their favorite fast food chain can serve as a way to get along if they can't face the plunge. That's their decision. I'd prefer that to watching exhibitions of horror in other restaurants.  Maybe this is too obvious or, worse yet, HERESEY, but that's my take.
     
    #15
    1bbqboy
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/06/07 15:43:41 (permalink)
    I like the potato taco. For what is worth.
    #16
    marzsit
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/07/02 06:39:28 (permalink)
    senor boogie woogie

    I am looking around Wikipedia today, and looked up the Taco Bell entry. What is interesting about Taco Bell is that in almost every place outside the United States, the chain has been an utter failure, and closed up really quickly never to return.


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taco_Bell
    (Look at part 3, outside the United States)

    Taco Bell failed completely in Australia, it's last stores left in 2005.

    It is mostly gone in Canada, and their locations sold beer!

    Failed in Greece.

    India has two locations, probably mostly serving expats.

    Failed in Mexico. Uh, no surprise there.

    Poland, Russia, Singapore, United Arab Emerites, no luck. Taco Bell is not in Hong Kong as far as I know.

    Basically a failure in the UK.

    Not listed in the Wiki, but Taco Bell failed in China also. They were in Shanghai, Guangzhou and I believe Beijing. Ate at the one in Shanghai, but it was not like the ones in the USA, it was a sit down restaurant. Failed after a year. Note, Shanghai has a lot of expatriates and many foreign chains are in Shanghai. A lot of fast food companies start in Shanghai and then move from there. Taco Bell is a non starter.

    Per the Wiki article....

    Taco Bell is also present in the Dominican Republic, Guam, Aruba, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama and on AAFES military bases in Germany, Iraq, Guatemala,[73] and El Salvador.[74]

    Taco Bell is present on Some American military bases worldwide, but it is restricted from non military personnel.

    On the other hand, KFC is in about 110 nations. It is the fastest growing international chain. In China, they are killing McDonalds. In China there is also Burger King. However, unlike in the USA, Burger King rocks here, and is growing, but will never be at the rate of KFC or McDonalds.

    KFC has done well in China because the company has given the local chain wide latitude to make their own products for local tastes. I can see why Taco Bell failed miserably in China. Probably the Taco Bell food is too weird for many tastes worldwide. Dunno. But Taco Bell has been a bummer on the international market. Any other theories?

     
     
    I work for a company that employs many immigrants (legally, they all have papers and the right to work and live here and most have gone through all of the bullcrap needed to become a US citizens, so teabaggers go **** yourselves....)
     
     from my personal observations and discussions with lots of folks from all over the planet, the general consensus is that "tex-mex", "mexican-american", "lawry's taco shell kits", and just about everything on the taco bell menu, and the hard-shell 'taco' itself, is total crap, and nobody wants to eat it unless it's a true emergency.
     
    and it would be impossible to create regional versions of the taco bell menu because of this.  taco bell is a very bad, almost racist, corporate implementation of a horrible product that has managed to totally blind most of the american population, as well as the world, into what mexican food could actually be......
     
    taco bell will never offer a freshly-made mahi-mahi taco on a freshly-made corn tortilla, because that isn't what they consider important to their plan.
     
    it's easier to serve canned or frozen dog food on a 3-week old stale tortilla, and they make much more $$$ by doing so.
    #17
    marzsit
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/08/22 06:43:09 (permalink)
    in the northwest we have a chain called "taco time"  the menu is similar to taco bell, but "usually" of better quality but the names of offered menu items are confusing to everybody who travels to the northwest.. for example, a 'burrito' everywhere else is called a 'soft taco' or 'natural taco' or 'wrap' here. no soft or fresh corn tortillas..
    but there are also "crisp burritos", which are big toquitos fried in a flour tortilla
    and there are the hard shell american tacos as well.
    the only saving grace is the "baja taco" the same stuff as the hard shell tacos served on 2 soft corn tortillas. why they serve it on 2 tortillas is a mystery, i usually toss the outer tortilla in the trash....
    and, probably the most wierd menu item is the "mexi fry". these are just deep-fried tater tots, nothing special. but, i do remember as a kid back in the 70's the mexi fries actually had some spices added to them. that is no longer the case. they usually come unsalted and are pretty bland....
     
    even though the food is rather flavorless, as far as mexican food is supposed to be around here, the quality is good. dump on plenty of hot sauce and it's much better than anything taco bell could ever offer.
     
     
    but, the original posting was why taco bell is doing so poorly in other countries. that question is obvious.....  outside of america (also known as 'merica' to southern states) most people know what food tastes good, and what food tastes bad. taco bell's food is nasty, is terrible and only tastes good to humans under 10 years of age who don't know anything better.
    #18
    1bbqboy
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/08/22 11:45:16 (permalink)
    Glad to see you back posting, Marzsit :-)
    #19
    mgyip
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    Re:Taco Bell has been an utter failure in the international market, why? 2014/08/22 12:52:01 (permalink)
    Keep in mind that Taco Bell is 'Merican fast food and in the past 20 years or so, it's differentiated itself from the rest of the Fast Food market by aiming squarely at the bottom-end of the market.  Like the McDonald's Value Menu, the food is horrible but it's consistent - consistently horrible but that's comforting for some customers.  
     
    There is a love for things American outside of the US just like there's a love for things NOT American inside the US.  The problem is that while McDonald's and KFC are embodiments of American cuisine, Taco Bell is an American interpretation of cheap Mexican food, orchestrated by an entrepreneur that originally sold hot dogs.  
    #20
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