Please summarize the article "Pizza Hut Wants to Roll Its Dough in Africa." 

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kipling2448 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Duane Helliloid's article for Businessweek, "Pizza Hut Wants to Roll its Dough in Africa", tackles a common theme: the failure of American businesses to adequately study prospective foreign markets before investing in operations. When Pizza Hut first decided to pursue the vast African market, it neglected to study the diverse cultures and traditions of that diverse continent.  The result was poor performance and lost investments.  By ignoring local tastes, including the role of economics in influencing consumer preferences, the pizza chain incorporated practices that were alien to the African market.  For instance, it was ignorant of the fact that the prevalence of cheap and plentiful chicken and the absence of a tradition of "dining-out" among many of the indigenous peoples were both inimical to the standard corporate business model that emphasized more traditional (from the American perspective) tastes and dining preferences. The failure of its initial venture into the African market led to a retrenchment, with a subsequent effort more appropriate to the diversity of the market and the uniqueness of local cultures and practices.  

The theme of Helliloid's article, as noted, is common.  The history of American corporate practices in foreign markets has resulted in numerous examples of those companies' failing to understand the nuances of those markets.  Pizza Hut was just the latest to catch on.

jameadows eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This article, which ran in Businessweek in 2015, is about how Pizza Hut is starting pizza delivery restaurants in parts of Africa. The pizza chain found that customers were not very interested in its dine-in model, so Pizza Hut is beginning to open delivery and take-out restaurants. At the time the article was written Pizza Hut had eight restaurants in South Africa and Zambia and planned to have 200 restaurants across the continent of Africa within the next 3 years. Pizza Hut was hoping to make its food more enticing to local people with local signs and ingredients, such as spicy South African beef sausage. 

At the time of publication, fast-food purchases in South Africa were projected to grow, but much of the business is homegrown. Countries such as Nigeria, Ghana, and Kenya offer less competition, though they have less reliable supply chains. Pizza Hut envisions the possibility for growth, though to date half of Africa's fast-food business is focused on chicken, which is more widely available. Burgers are second, and pizza is a distant third with only 5% of the market. Supplies such as pepperoni have to be imported, and fast-food chains will have to bring pizza prices in line with the moderate cost of chicken. In addition Pizza Hut will have to win over locals, who prefer chicken over pizza.