Impero Connect

Case Study: CKE Restaurants Holdings, Inc.


Central support teams keep Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s restaurants humming with Impero Connect

“Impero Connect is our lifeline to our restaurants”

With more than 3,600 locations around the globe, CKE Restaurants Holdings, Inc. (“CKE”) owns, operates and franchises some of the best-known, quick-service restaurant brands. At Carl’s Jr.®, Hardee’s®, Green Burrito® and Red Burrito® restaurants, the on-site management and staff deliver high-quality food in a welcoming environment. CKE’s central support teams tackle multiple in-store technical service needs so restaurant teams can focus on their customers, not system or application headaches. To provide PCI-compliant support to their locations, CKE turns to Impero Connect.

“Impero Connect is our lifeline to our restaurants,” said Brian Jensen, vice president of technical services for CKE. “Our managers and restaurant staff are focused on pleasing our guests, so we don’t want them to stress over technical issues.”

From their central support team and restaurant help desk, CKE’s technical staff helps in-store management with a variety of issues. “We support managers when they have back office issues, such as running reports or working with inventory systems and employees with accessing training and other corporate resources from employee kiosks,” Jensen added.

After using a variety of remote access tools, CKE chose to consolidate their support with Impero Connect. “PCI requirements have to be met when we are accessing the store network,” said Jensen. “As PCI compliance demands became more stringent, we decided to move to Impero.”

Impero’s advanced encryption, logging functions and multi-factor authentication are the main reasons why CKE chose Impero Connect. “In addition to the guests and hosts, we now use Impero Security Servers integrated with RSA two-factor authentication so we can provide access for our support teams while maintaining compliance,” Jensen explained. An additional benefit is Impero’s ability to support connectivity across diverse networks.

“Our network includes multiple network types – DSL (cable), PCS (wireless), and VSAT (satellite). Impero Connect works well with the diversity of our network and with high-latency, low-bandwidth VSAT connections,” Jensen said.

As PCI-compliance standards and their network and systems continue to evolve, CKE knows they have a partner they can rely on in Impero. “I would certainly recommend Impero to others; the service and support we’ve received from them has been top-notch,” Jensen concluded.

About CKE Restaurants Holdings, Inc.

CKE Restaurants Holdings, Inc. (“CKE”) is a privately held company headquartered in Carpinteria, Calif. CKE is not a franchiser and substantially conducts  all of its restaurant activities and operations through its subsidiaries. Carl’s Jr. Restaurants LLC and Hardee’s Restaurants LLC own, operate and franchise the Carl’s Jr., Hardee’s, Green Burrito® and Red Burrito® concepts. Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s operate as one brand under two names, acknowledging the rich regional heritage of both banners. After opening their first restaurants in New York and New Jersey last spring and recent international openings in Japan, Australia, Canada, Colombia and Guatemala, Carl’s Jr. Restaurants LLC and Hardee’s Restaurants LLC now have a total of 3,684 franchised or company-operated restaurants in 44 states and 38 foreign countries and U.S. territories. Known for its one-of-a-kind premium menu items such as 100 percent Black Angus Thickburgers®, Made from Scratch™ Biscuits, Hand-Breaded Chicken Tenders™ and Fresh Baked Buns, as well as an award-winning marketing approach, the Carl’s Jr./Hardee’s brand continues to deliver substantial and consistent growth in the U.S. and overseas. The Carl’s Jr./Hardee’s system is now 93 percent franchised, with international restaurants representing 19 percent of the system. For more information about CKE, please visit or its brand sites at and