August sales at franchised A&W Restaurants grew 8.2 percent over last year, following double-digit increases in February, May, June and July. Systemwide, year-to-date same-store sales growth is at the highest level since franchisees acquired the brand in 2011.
“This is a remarkable recovery from the dark days of March and April,” says CEO Kevin Bazner. “As we head into the fall, sales at nearly two-thirds of our stand-alone restaurants are up over 2019, which was our eighth straight year of comp-store sales growth.” The majority of co-branded locations also are up over last year.
Since franchisees acquired the company from YUM! Brands in 2011, average unit sales have increased by over 38 percent. According to Bazner, the brand’s performance is a key reason it was recognized by Franchise Business Review as a Top Food and Beverage Franchise for the second straight year.
A&W was just one of 35 franchise food brands to be listed by the market research firm that performs independent surveys on franchisee satisfaction. It analyzed 18 months’ worth of data from over 4,300 franchise owners representing 100 franchise brands in the food sector. A&W franchisees were surveyed on 33 benchmark questions about their experience and satisfaction regarding critical areas of their franchise systems, including training and support, operations, franchisor/franchisee relations and financial opportunity.
“Being owned by franchisees, we are solely focused on their success,” Bazner says. According to Franchise Business Review, A&W is outperforming its competitors and franchisees’ expectations. “It is very rewarding to have our franchise partners rate their satisfaction with A&W so highly.”
A&W currently has 15 franchise locations in development. A new stand-alone restaurant opens early next month in Mountain Lake, Minnesota, southwest of Minneapolis-St. Paul.
Now in its 101st year, A&W is America’s first franchised restaurant chain. Known for its All American Food, as well as Root Beer that is made fresh in each restaurant and served in frosty mugs, there are more than 900 A&Ws in the U.S. and Asia.