Columbus, Ohio-based restaurant chain Damon’s International has continued to emphasise the importance of expansion. 

After adding 15 new restaurants to its 140-strong global portfolio last year, two more franchised Damon’s Grill locations opened this week, the first of five new restaurants scheduled for the first quarter.

The first Damon’s in Puerto Rico opens in Guaynabo, a city of 90,000 located about 10 minutes from San Juan. Located in a retail shopping district, it is the first of seven to be built on the island. The franchise is owned and operated by Puerto Rico-based American Management, Inc. Chairman Walter Pierluisi plans to open his next Damon’s this summer in Hatillo. The restaurant seats 214 and has approximately 100 employees.

Damon’s 12th Pennsylvania restaurant, located just west of Allentown in Fogelsville, also opens this week. Veteran restaurant operators Jim Rippon and Al Hassman built a 230-seat restaurant that employs 120. It serves the Allentown area, and is expected to draw from suburban Philadelphia.

Shannon Foust, president and CEO of Damon’s International, commented: “The Fogelsville restaurant is key to our strategy of building out markets where we already have a significant presence.

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“At the same time, we are continuing to expand into new markets when special opportunities exist, as is the case in Puerto Rico.”