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Usain Bolt's Tracks & Records sports bar to expand to UK

ON THE INSIDE TRACK: The interior of Usain Bolt's Kingston sports bar, Tracks & Records

JAMAICAN-BASED franchise company FRANJAM has signed a major contract with the UK-based Casual Dining Restaurants Group (CDRG) to open 15 Tracks & Records restaurants across the UK over the next five years. The first will be opened within a few months.

Tracks & Records, a Jamaican-themed restaurant, which boasts eight-time Olympic gold medallist Usain Bolt as a key partner, started operations in Kingston, Jamaica, in April 2011.

"This is a significant milestone in the company's development. When we created the Tracks & Records concept, it was done with these major markets in mind. The UK has been a key target market for us since the conceptualisation stage over seven years ago, and there is no greater satisfaction than to see it unfold in this way," stated FRANJAM's Managing Director, Gary Matalon.

"For Jamaica, I believe this signifies the first time a local, home-grown concept has evolved into becoming an international franchise. This confirms Brand Jamaica's potential and gives us widespread hope that we can export many other Jamaican brands through this business model."


THUMBS-UP FOR THE FUTURE: Usain Bolt collecting his Bronze medal at the IAAF World Championships on August 6

Bolt said:

"I'm happy to be able to share a taste of the Jamaica that I know and love with the rest of the world through the opening of these restaurants across the UK. London has always been a special place for me, and I thank Aly and CDRG for giving us the opportunity to share our vision and our culture with you all."

Jamaica's Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett added:

"Jamaica is famous for great food, great athletes like Usain Bolt, and a culture second to none. Gastronomy tourism is a big focus of enhancing tourism experiences right now, and this deal will only amplify our efforts of positioning Jamaica as a gastronomy destination."

This article was adapted from one that appears on the website of our sister paper, The Gleaner.

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