Anil Yadav, who owns one of the largest franchisee companies in the U.S., bought a majority interest in 48-unit Nick the Greek. 

Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. As part of the agreement, Nick the Greek will be run by its founding management team, which still has a minority stake. The brand has 70 restaurants in the pipeline. Existing locations are spread across Northern and Southern California, Nevada, Kansas, Texas, and Utah.

The chain earns roughly $1.5 million in systemwide AUV, and recent openings are “far exceeding” that level, said Richard Pawlowski, CFO of purchasing company Yadav Enterprises. The restaurant fits into 1,500-1,800 square feet of space and comes with development costs between $400,000-$600,000 before allowances. 

“With compelling unit-level economics, a strong existing pipeline, and a long runway ahead of it, we are excited to partner with the team and leverage our infrastructure to support their growth,” Pawlowski said in a statement. 

The concept was founded in 2014 by three cousins, all named Nick Tsigaris after their grandfather, per Greek tradition. “Big” Nick is president, “Little” Nick is chief development officer, and “Baby” Nick is chief marketing officer. Close family friend, Komiel Mohsenzadegan, serves as chief operating officer. Nick the Greek is known for its gyros, souvlaki (skewers), salads, and desserts. 

“We are thrilled to receive this strategic control investment by Anil and his team,” “Big” Nick said in a statement. “We believe that Anil’s experience, scale, expertise, and network will help accelerate the growth and development of the brand.”

Yadav Enterprises, which oversees nearly 600 stores nationwide, is the largest operator of Jack in the Box and the biggest U.S. operator of TGI Fridays. The entity also holds significant ownership in TGI Fridays and serves as one of the largest franchisees of Denny’s. 

Nick the Greek marks the brand’s second acquisition in as many years. In 2021, Yadav Enterprises agreed to buy Mexican fast casual Taco Cabana for $85 million from public company Fiesta Restaurant Group. 

“We were looking to invest in another growth-oriented franchisor, and Nick the Greek is the perfect fit,” Yadav said in a statement. “The food is delicious, differentiated and loved by our guests. The operations are simple and scalable, and the brand has a genuine authenticity driven by its Greek founders who will continue to run the company on a day-to-day basis. We have been overwhelmed by enquiries from potential franchisees since news of our partnership has spread.”

Fast Casual, Franchising, Growth, Story, Nick the Greek