Big Chicken is scoring big in Las Vegas. 

Big Chicken, the star-powered fast casual chicken concept founded by Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal, announced today that it has signed a franchise agreement with accomplished restaurateur Vincent Alba (Vinnie) to open eight new Big Chicken locations in the Vegas city limits and nearby suburban Henderson. 

“I was instantly hooked from the moment I tasted the food at Big Chicken, and from then on, I knew it was something I wanted to be a part of,” says Alba, who has been a regular at the brand’s original location just off The Strip. “When you think of Shaquille O’Neal, you think big, bold, and fun, and each menu item truly reflects those qualities. Both the local community and thrill-seeking visitors in Las Vegas are vibrant and passionate, and after meeting with the excellent leadership team I’m confident Big Chicken will meet that energy.” 

Currently a multi-unit owner of four Firehouse Subs locations in Las Vegas, Alba has amassed over 25 years of restaurant operations experience with the past eight being in franchise ownership. As a Las Vegas resident, Alba will utilize his knowledge of ownership and operations to expand Big Chicken’s success to serve both Las Vegas and Henderson with the support of a strong management team.

“As Big Chicken’s home market, Las Vegas holds a special place for us and our fans, so we had to find someone to grow with who not only has the right experience, but shares our passion for the brand,” says Big Chicken CEO Josh Halpern. “Vinnie meets our criteria and then some, and we’re thrilled to have him as a franchisee on our team, helping to continue our expansion in Las Vegas.” 

In the last year, less than 11 months after the announcement of Big Chicken’s franchising initiative, the brand has more than 150 locations in its development pipeline. Upcoming franchise expansion includes new restaurants in Illinois, California, Texas, Oklahoma, Florida, Ohio, Idaho, Utah and Nevada. Big Chicken currently has an existing location open in Las Vegas along with restaurants in Los Angeles, Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena, metro-New York’s UBS Arena, The Moody Center in Austin and on two Carnival Cruise ships. Tailored for skilled restaurant owner/operator groups, like Alba, the franchise investment has been designed to align with successful, multi-unit investors who want to become part of Shaquille’s dream team.

Along with O’Neal, the championship pedigree behind Big Chicken includes a pair of powerful ownership group partners, including:

Authentic Brands (ABG), a brand development, marketing and entertainment company, which owns a portfolio of iconic and world-renowned brands including Sports Illustrated, Elvis Presley and Reebok. 

JRS Hospitality, Las Vegas’ leading events and catering company with a reputation for hosting top tier parties, private dining and corporate gatherings at its iconic venues such as Cabo Wabo, Hexx, and Beer Park. 

Ideal franchisees are multi-unit operators who trust and understand the established system Big Chicken has in place and have the capital to open several units. Restaurant experience — whether traditional or not — is preferred, but not required. With significant interest from new owners, franchise investors will have the advantage to join a brand on the cusp of worldwide expansion. 

Emerging Concepts, Fast Casual, Franchising, Growth, News, Big Chicken