Freshii will expand across China with a master development agreement recently signed with ICON.

With close to 100 outlets in operation and more than 300 under development across the world, Freshii is expanding outside of its North American market with stores in the United Arab Emirates and Austria, as well as units under construction in Switzerland and Colombia. The agreement with ICON marks the brand's first foray into Asia.

Freshii features freshly made salads, burritos, rice bowls, yogurts and soups, which the company hopes will strongly appeal to the country's rising middle class. A CNBC article from 2011 listed health food as a growing trend in China, and stated that it would grow to become a $70 billion industry by the year 2015.

"The trend in China of consumers looking for healthier options at restaurants leaves a wide open door for our brand. This is where Freshii, as the market leader in the health casual space, has a unique opportunity to meet the demands of the market," said Matthew Corrin, Freshii founder and CEO.

The development agreement calls for ICON, Freshii's Master Franchisee, to open at least 100 units within the next 10 years with an initial focus on Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei, and with the ultimate goal of reaching up to 300 outlets in partnership with sub-franchisees.

ICON's management team has introduced and developed several international brands in China. Ryan Durishin, who worked on the deal as a senior director of Franchise Development with Fransmart, said, "ICON is the perfect partner for Freshii to work with, thanks to their wealth of experience in China, and their focus on customer experience and quality operations."

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