Tim Hortons opens first location in China

Tim Hortons has opened its first restaurant in China — in the People’s Square in the city of Shanghai.

The Shanghai Tim Hortons is the first location in the country following the signing of a master franchise agreement last year with the New York-based private equity fund the Cartesian Capital Group.

Shanghai came first, but the chain expects 1,500 locations will open across China over the next decade.

The chain, which is now headquartered in Oakville, Ont., currently also has 4,800 locations across Canada, the U.S., Mexico,  the Philippines and the Middle East.

“China is an attractive growth market and we can’t wait for guests to try our classic favourites and some new offerings crafted specifically to the Chinese market,” Tim Hortons president Alex Macedo said in a release.

The new location will serve many of the chain’s traditional offerings as well as some new food and drink options unique to the Chinese market.

Tim Hortons plans to expand aggressively in the Chinese market. (Jonathan Hayward/Canadian Press)

In addition to different tea flavours and new hot espresso drinks, Tim Hortons will offer a new salted egg yolk timbit and a maple macchiato.

The physical design of the location contains a number of nods to its Canadian heritage, including floor tiles that the company said in a release are “inspired by the image of maple leaves scattered on the ground in autumn.”

The colour scheme features a lot of red and maple leaves, and the handle on the front door to the store resembles a hockey stick.

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