Blum Tries to Light Fire Under BK

May 07, 2003
George Anderson

By George Anderson

Brad Blum, the new chief executive officer at Burger King, has a long menu of things that need fixing at the chain.

Nearly 20% of the chain’s franchise operators are in trouble and the chain faces challenges in every area of its business, from marketing to operations.

USA Today reports, Mr. Blum’s goal “is to enlarge Burger King’s cooking process into the centerpiece of a turnaround strategy that will focus all new products, marketing and, ultimately, restaurant design around the fact that Burger King’s food is cooked over an open fire.”

Dubbed “the open hearth” concept, BK’s new chief sees this as “our point of differentiation from everyone else.”

Moderator’s Comment: What are your thoughts on BK’s
“open hearth” strategy?

BK’s competitive issues go well beyond the burger wars
these days. If open hearth is just another BK vs. McDonald’s comparison marketing
scheme then the concept will go up in smoke. Let’s hope Mr. Blum’s fast casual
dining experience will make sure this isn’t the case. [George
Anderson – Moderator

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