Arby’s Restaurant Group Inc. (ARG), parent company of the franchisor of the Arby’s brand, has announced the acquisition of all 19 Arby’s restaurants in the Knoxville, Tennessee, area previously operated by Arby’s franchisee T.G.J. & Co. Inc.
“Our family has been a part of the Knoxville business community for almost five decades. We have employed tens of thousands of great East Tennesseans who have been the basis for our success and have been further blessed with amazing support from the many more thousands of loyal guests whom we’ve had the pleasure of serving,” says Tom Johnson, III, co-owner, T. G. J. & Co. Inc. “Our family is looking forward to remaining actively involved in the Knoxville community and are pleased that ARG is committed to delivering the same great experience our patrons in Knoxville and the surrounding areas have grown to know and love.”
Tom Johnson Jr. began the family-owned business when he opened his first Arby’s restaurant on May 20, 1968 at 6903 Kingston Pike Road in Knoxville. Johnson was one of Arby’s early franchisees and an original board member of ARCOP, Arby’s supply chain cooperative. His son, Johnson III, was active as an Arby’s Franchise Association (AFA) Board member for many years.
“T.G.J. & Co. and the Johnson’s have been outstanding operators and members of the Arby’s family for nearly 50 years,” says CEO Paul Brown. “We are proud to become the stewards of this great business several generations of the Johnson family have worked so hard to build. We will deliver a seamless transition and continue Inspiring Smiles Through Delicious Experiences among Arby’s loyal guests in the Knoxville area.”
“It has been an honor to be able to experience and get to be a part of continuing what my grandfather started almost 50 years ago, says Carrie Gandy, CFO, T. G. J. & Co. Inc. and daughter of Johnson III. “What I learned from him is that we are not just in the roast-beef business, we are in the people business. The employees in the restaurants serving our guests everyday are the ones who have made us successful. We cherish each one of them and they will always be considered a part of our family.”
Arby’s remains on track with its goal to surpass $4 billion in total system-wide same-store sales (SSS) by the end of 2018. The Brand has achieved 22 consecutive quarters of SSS growth and 13 consecutive quarters of industry outperformance.