Special Report | August 2013 | By Sam Oches

The QSR 50

The 50 brands setting the pace in the quick-service and fast-casual restaurant industries.

In 2012, Chick-fil-A surpassed KFC to become the best-selling chicken chain, Jimmy John’s and Five Guys joined the billion-dollar-brands club, and fast-growing Wingstop and Moe’s Southwest Grill climbed into the limited-service industry’s upper echelon for the first time. McDonald’s, meanwhile, maintained its stranglehold on the No. 1 position, nearly tripling runner-up Subway’s domestic sales. Dig deep into the data driving the quick-service and fast-casual restaurant industries with this year’s QSR 50.

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RankCompany/Chain Name2012 U.S. Systemwide Sales (Millions)2012 U.S. Average Sales per Unit (thousands)Number of Franchised Units in 2012Number of Company Units in 2012sort ascendingTotal Units in 2012Total Change in Units from 2011
34Long John Silver's$723.0$794.09110911-21
2Subway*$12,100.0$481.025,549025,549956
18Dairy Queen*$2,300.0$545.04,45934,462-23
43Tim Hortons$532.2$1,095.0800480490
48Moe's Southwest Grill$452.0$1,102.5478448243
32Quiznos*$838.0$345.02,34942,353-150
45Baskin-Robbins$510.0$207.12,45672,463-30
31Culver's$838.8$1,837.5463947228
46CiCi's Pizza*$505.0$915.054010550-23
49Wingstop$450.9$902.05102353345
25Jimmy John's$1,262.8$878.81,534261,560229
7Dunkin' Donuts$6,264.2$857.47,278287,306291
19Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen$2,253.0$1,242.01,634451,67969
33Papa Murphy's$738.0$574.91,270591,32979
40Krispy Kreme*$569.4$2,428.0142972399
27Zaxby's$979.3$1,765.74679856525
39Jason's Deli$578.9$2,556.410114424510
41El Pollo Loco*$563.0$1,475.02321653973
5Burger King*$8,587.0$1,195.07,0001837,183-21
29Bojangles'$864.5$1,717.532521153630
10KFC$4,459.0$957.04,3192374,556-162
26Five Guys Burgers & Fries$1,082.7$1,049.08502551,105204
28Church's Chicken$869.9$706.59442581,20210
47Captain D's$467.1$903.0239278517-2
44In-N-Out Burger*$528.0$1,935.0028028014
9Chick-fil-A$4,621.1$3,157.91,3912921,68377
37Del Taco$607.9$1,100.025329855119
50Jamba Juice$450.0$714.747330177440
38Qdoba Mexican Grill$583.2$966.031131662744
35Checkers/Rally's$696.9$903.4455321776-3
13Domino's Pizza$3,500.0$710.24,5403884,92821
36White Castle$618.5$1,284.204064069
12Sonic Drive-In$3,790.7$1,074.03,1474093,556-5
30Steak 'n Shake*$857.5$1,700.08741450110
24Carl's Jr.$1,400.0$1,470.06974271,1248
8Pizza Hut$5,666.0$883.05,7574526,209156
42Boston Market$559.0$1,184.00469469-12
20Hardee's$1,900.0$1,145.01,2334701,7038
14Jack in the Box$3,084.9$1,379.01,7035472,25029
22Little Caesars*$1,684.0$465.03,1755503,725207
23Whataburger$1,476.8$1,996.011962174012
17Papa John's$2,402.4$829.02,4836483,131130
11Panera Bread$3,861.0$2,427.28438091,652111
15Arby's$2,992.0$993.22,3431,0113,354-83
6Taco Bell$7,478.0$1,363.04,2181,0445,26225
4Wendy's2$8,600.0$1,483.84,5281,2895,817-34
16Chipotle Mexican Grill$2,731.2$2,113.001,4101,410180
21Panda Express$1,797.4$1,237.0471,4861,533119
1McDonald's $35,600.0$2,600.012,6051,55214,15759
3Starbucks*1$10,600.0$1,223.04,2626,86611,128341
*Includes figures estimated by Technomic Inc. 1Franchise Unit Counts Represent data for Licensed Units 2AUV data for Company-operated units only