Aloha Poke Co., the nation’s premier fast-casual poke restaurant concept, announced today the opening of its first of eleven stores planned for the Houston metro market. Husband and wife team, Amanda and Corey Tabb of Cypress lead Aloha Poke’s entrance into the Lone Star State. The new Aloha Poke is in the Fairfield Town Center shopping plaza located at 29040 Highway 290, suite A05 in Cypress, Texas.
Amanda and Corey approached the idea of fast-casual franchising at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic to diversify their financial futures with a business model that created additional revenue streams, gave them more control of their current finances, while starting a generational wealth portfolio of business ventures to leave their three daughters. As Amanda continues to have a successful career in the Texas oil and gas industry, Corey recently retired from the same industry. The husband-and-wife team set sights toward restaurant franchising concepts that promoted environmentally friendly, sustainable food sourcing while offering members of their Cypress community a premium, healthy fast-casual food option.
“We are thrilled to be the first Aloha Poke restaurant in the state we love, the state where we are raising our children,” says Amanda. “As first-time franchise owners, we decided on Aloha Poke for several reasons including the brand’s franchise development program, the projected return on investment, the ease of operations, low labor requirements, and most importantly, the sheer beauty and high-quality nutritional value of the brand’s dedicated menu.”
Amanda and Corey further cited that the brand’s ability to demonstrate success behind its core values made the decision of franchise business ownership very attractive. These core values include Aloha Poke’s brand promise in offering fast, fresh-packed sushi-grade fish and raw ingredients, its corporate governance of presenting a transparent FDD during the discovery process, smaller brick and mortar build-outs, and sustainable food logistics.
The planned Houston expansion nearly doubles Aloha Poke’s total franchise location holdings and spearheads the brand’s long-term development plan across other metroplex areas including Dallas/Fort Worth and Austin.
“Aloha Poke Co is excited and extremely proud to welcome Amanda and Corey into the Aloha Poke franchise family,” says Chris Birkinshaw, CEO, Aloha Poke Co. “Houston is one of the fastest-growing and culturally diverse markets in the nation and we are very excited to introduce the Aloha Poke brand with incredibly dedicated franchisees like the Tabb family.”
According to industry analysts, the poke foods market is expected to grow by $1.2B by 2024. Aloha Poke franchising is uniquely poised to meet this growing demand with consumers looking for new, innovative ways to eat healthier while still on the go.
“Aloha Poke is the perfect example of where consumer trends are heading within the fast-casual space,” adds Birkinshaw. “The COVID-19 pandemic has created operational challenges for many food and beverage franchises. Our concept, though also affected, has managed to bypass some of the more serious issues faced by restaurants today, while being able to serve a growing consumer trend of eating healthier, nutrient-dense foods. Aloha Poke’s expansion is credited to the ease of operations, sustainable food sourcing practices, lower overhead costs, and a healthy, dedicated menu.”
Aloha Poke Ahead of the COVID-19 Learning Curve
With the sharp acceleration of convenience trends because of the pandemic, the challenge for restaurateurs and brands right now is to try to meet high labor and operational costs, anticipate consumer behavior patterns due to COVID and deliver what consumers want in a safe and quick manner. In many respects, Aloha Poke was moving toward this re-imagined fast-casual franchise concept well before the pandemic arrived.
“The restaurant of the future was in development before the pandemic entered our lives,” says Paul Tripodes, VP franchise development, Aloha Poke. “Franchise operations oriented towards less consumer friction, less reliance on a differentiated physical brand experience, and more focus on the digital experience will most likely experience fewer growing pains in the short and long term. COVID simply placed fire to the fuel of change within the food and beverage industry with the future of restaurants being reimagined in the present day.”