Atlanta-based Popeyes Chicken & Biscuits, the world's second-largest chicken chain and a division of AFC Enterprises, is targeting 14 key US markets for expansion.

These markets are Albuquerque; Charlotte, NC; Chattanooga, Tenn.; Cleveland; Dayton, Ohio; Denver; Greensboro, NC; Indianapolis; Knoxville, Tenn.; Las Vegas; Orlando, Fla.; Raleigh/Durham, NC; Richmond, Va.; and Tulsa, Okla. Popeyes is looking for franchisees to develop traditional freestanding and in-line restaurants throughout these areas.

"For 30 years, Popeyes has been a leader in the quick-service restaurant industry," said Brian Lacey, chief franchising and development officer: "We feel these dynamic markets hold a great deal of opportunity for the Popeyes brand and look forward to increasing our presence in them."

Popeyes, which uses the traditions of New Orleans cuisine and culture, now has 289 franchisees and more than 1,622 restaurants in 42 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and 21 other countries.

"Popeyes is looking for entrepreneurs who are committed to Popeyes' vision, have proven expertise in restaurant operations and are capable of developing a minimum of three locations," Lacey said. "We work hard to provide equity and opportunity by ensuring women and minorities are included in our reach."