Popeyes franchise opens in Billings

Friday, March 13, 2015

Montana's second Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is open in Billings.

The state's first franchise opened on Malmstrom Air Force Base in July 2012. The Army and Air Force Exchange Service operates that Popeyes franchise in a building behind the commissary on the base.

The Billings quick-serve restaurant is owned by Jan and Denny Rehberg, the former Montana congressman. The couple also owned two Burger King restaurants in Billings and Kalispell.

Denny Rehberg said they plan to open additional Popeyes restaurants in Montana.

"The corporation doesn"t allow you to open additional franchises until your first is in operation for year, so our time line is restricted by that," he said. "But we are definitely looking at Bozeman, Butte, Helena, Missoula, Kalispell and Great Falls." The MAFB Popeyes has restricted access since it is located on the base and the menu is limited.

"Our restaurants have full menus and expanded hours," Rehberg said.

Rehberg said he's enjoying being a full time, private sector businessman.

"Jan and I have a real estate development company and I couldn"t do this without her," he said. "We"ve hired about 150 permanent employees between our Burger Kings and Popeyes. And we are still ranching. We love being in business."

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