Potbelly Corporation announced that it has nearly 50 locations in various stages of development throughout the state of Florida. Over the past year, the brand has finalized multi-unit agreements with five franchise groups to develop 46 shops in six critical regions: Tampa, Orlando, Fort Myers, Broward County, Gainesville and Panama City.
“Florida as a whole holds immense promise for Potbelly, and we are strategically expanding in the Sunshine State to reach our potential,” says Lynette McKee, senior vice president of franchising at Potbelly. “With experienced franchise groups ready to showcase the Potbelly difference, I have no doubt that we will continue to grow our loyal customer base as we bring our brand to new regions across the state.”
- Tampa – The brand’s accelerated growth efforts kicked off in September 2022, when Potbelly announced a deal with STA Management to build 14 shops. The group is expected to grow its current presence in the region from two units to eight by the end of 2024, with the next four shops slated to open in New Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and Largo.
- Orlando – Potbelly signed a multi-unit agreement with Sugarland Investment Group LLC in November 2022 that will bring six new shops to Orlando over the next seven years. The group has already signed a lease for its first location at the Colonial Plaza in the up-and-coming Milk District.
- Broward County & Gainesville – Stellar Hospitality agreed to a deal in March that will add 16 units in two separate regions of the state, including 14 shops in Broward County, north of Miami, and two shops in Gainesville.
- Fort Myers & Naples – In June, Potbelly signed a shop development agreement for eight units with Innovative Consulting & Management Inc. in Charlotte, Collier, and Lee counties.
- Panama City – Potbelly entered a two-shop development agreement in July with father-son duo Daniel and Zachary Incaudo of Incaudo Inc. With Daniel’s nearly 35 years in the food sales industry and Zachary’s expertise in technology sales, the Incaudo team is poised to ignite the sandwich scene in Bay and Walton counties.
“We are eager to be part of the Potbelly family and share in the passion for creating an inviting neighborhood vibe with the best sandwiches in town,” says Daniel Incaudo. “Both Zac and I are longtime fans of Potbelly. The brand has an undeniable reputation for great food, a proven business model and extensive support for its franchisees. We’re thrilled to add even more shops to the Potbelly pipeline in Florida and anticipate a warm welcome from our community.”
Looking ahead, Potbelly is committed to maintaining its growth momentum in Florida, with plans to identify accomplished restaurant owner/operator groups in key markets including Pensacola, Tallahassee, Jacksonville, additional areas of Orlando and Tampa, West Palm Beach and Miami. Potbelly is also looking for experienced franchise partners to lead development across the state border in Mobile, Alabama.
As Potbelly continues to attract multi-unit franchise groups, ideal candidates should be able to meet the required financial criteria, have restaurant operations experience, strong entrepreneurial skillsets, focused problem-solving skills, and enjoy working with others. Qualified franchise candidates can benefit from the sandwich concept’s flexible shop designs, including inline, endcap, drive-thru and non-traditional locations, which are equipped with tech-enabled enhancements to foster in-shop, take-out and delivery dining. These factors, along with a diverse menu and multiple revenue streams stemming from various dayparts, all make Potbelly an attractive franchise restaurant investment.
Potbelly has a long-term goal of reaching 2,000 shops over the next 10 years, with at least 85% of those locations being franchised, as part of the company’s Franchise Growth Acceleration Initiative.