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    Blaze Pizza Co-Founder Growing Hot Chicken Franchise

  • Industry News September 26, 2019
    Dave's Hot Chicken
    The brand is currently licensed to franchise in most of the country, including California, Texas, Nevada, New York, Washington, Maryland and Illinois.

    Dave’s Hot Chicken, which started as a parking lot pop-up, has seen big demand at its new North Hollywood location—lines rivaling the original. More stores are in the works, including a Koreatown unit set to open later this year, with the ultimate goal of expanding the Dave’s Hot Chicken brand nationwide.

    Dave’s Hot Chicken has partnered with elite restaurant leaders, led by the investment group that incubated Wetzel’s Pretzels and Blaze Pizza, the fastest-growing restaurant concept in history. “After co-founding and growing Wetzel’s Pretzels to more than 350 locations and $150 million in sales, and being an original investor in Blaze Pizza, I can say the national growth potential for Dave’s Hot Chicken is unparalleled,” says Bill Phelps, CEO of Dave’s Hot Chicken. “The product experience is phenomenal and far elevated compared to traditional quick service and fast casual chicken chains. We’re looking forward to partnering with multi-unit operators to bring Dave’s to major markets across the country.”

    Along with Bill Phelps, Dave’s Hot Chicken counts Maria Shriver and movie producer John Davis as investors, both of whom were initial investors of Blaze Pizza back in 2012. Additional investors in Dave’s include Good Morning America anchor and former football star Michael Strahan and the highest grossing actor of all time, Samuel L. Jackson.

    “The fast-casual chicken category has been red hot in recent years. As predicted, chicken concepts have taken off to fill consumer demand for healthier protein in an affordable, craveable format. Predicated on the success of chain leaders Chick-fil-a and Raising Caine’s, emerging concepts are being incubated to fill underserved niches,” says Darren Tristano, CEO of Foodservice Results. “Craving for high quality food with bold, spicy flavors appears to be representative of Millennial and younger GenZ consumers. Whoever cracks the code on the next big concept will find themselves in a strong position for long-term growth. Dave’s Hot Chicken checks the boxes on today’s trends and has the executive experience, founder track record and appealing concept elements for success.”

    Dave’s Hot Chicken specializes in Hot Chicken tenders and sliders, offered at seven various spice levels ranging from No Heat to Reaper (which requires a signed waiver for those who dare), and sides of house-made Kale Slaw, creamy Mac n’ Cheese, and crispy French Fries. The concept was founded by innovative chef Dave Kopushyan, along with his three best friends, who were inspired by the unique, flavorful spice of Nashville Hot Chicken and set out to create their own craveable version for Los Angelenos. Their passion paid off, with the Daily Meal naming Dave’s Hot Chicken the second most popular restaurant in the country according to 2018 Yelp insights. Currently, Dave’s Hot Chicken’s original Hollywood restaurant has a 4.5 Yelp rating with more than 2,500 reviews.

    The brand is currently licensed to franchise in most of the country, including California, Texas, Nevada, New York, Washington, Maryland and Illinois.

    News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by QSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.