Pollo Campero is somewhat of a dark horse in the U.S. quick-service industry. Founded in 1971 in Guatemala, it has built up a huge international following over the years while perfecting its offerings of Latin-style fried chicken, drinks, and sides such as yucca and plantains. Pollo Campero has become “the Latin chicken loved around the world.”
Pollo Campero has been franchising since 1994 and in the U.S. since 2002. Though the brand has nearly 50 franchised stores in the United States currently, the chicken concept is aiming for 300 new stores throughout North America over the next five years.
The food and a commitment to franchisee success are what will make that happen.
“We’ve got to offer our customers a unique flavor profile they simply can’t get any place else,” says Todd Deckert, director of sales and marketing for Campero USA Corp. “Our fried chicken isn’t greasy. Currently, Pollo Campero is the only national chain to offer consumers the choice of both grilled and fried chicken on the bone. From our great tasting Latin chicken to the choice of our fresh prepared Latin side dishes, the quality and variety of our food are what make us truly unique. It’s not just fast food. It’s quality food, served fast. That’s why we’ve enjoyed such high volumes.”
Consistently, Pollo Campero stores rank in the top five of all brands in the area of average gross sales per store, says Jorge Armenteros, executive vice president of business development.
“Our sales averages are right up there, well above KFC and Popeye’s,” says Armenteros.
A Pollo Campero store not only distinguishes itself from other name brands through its food flavors. The company also pays close attention to making sure the customer’s entire dining experience is pleasurable, from the upbeat Latin music playing in the store to the colorful murals and the enthusiastic attitude of its employees.
“If I’m a franchisee and I’m looking to invest, I want to buy something of value,” explains Deckert. “The landscape is getting so cluttered with commodity-type brands. Here you’re getting a very different experience compared to the others. You’re benefiting from that unique position in the market.”
The brand has nearly 50 franchised stores in the United States currently and is aiming for 300 new stores in the country over the next five years.
One sign of the company’s success with franchisees is a commitment from the store’s current U.S. franchise owners to open 200 of the company’s planned 300 stores. Those numbers will allow a good “critical mass” of stores in key markets, allowing for more economies of scale in marketing.
Strong support of franchisees is extremely important to the company. Pollo Campero employs a team of Franchise Business Specialists to help a new franchisee get his or her footing and advise them as they grow the franchise. The company also has star teams in real estate, construction, quality assurance, and research and development.
The dark horse from Latin American is growing strong, leaving little wonder how it has become “the Latin chicken loved around the world.”
For more information about franchising opportunities with Pollo Campero, visit www.campero.com.