It’s been about 10 years since Bojangles’ last major change to its store design prototype.
Now, as the quick-service chicken and biscuits brand pushes 700 units, it is positioning itself for future growth, and that includes a significant update to the prototype, including a new biscuit theater that allows customers to get a view of the restaurant’s baking process.
“Bojangles’ has been making biscuits from scratch since we started in 1977, and was the case and as is the case with a lot of [quick-service] kitchens, it’s kind of been out of view and we wanted to make sure that we brought the biscuit up front and center,” says Randy Icard, Bojangles’ vice president of construction and development. “This is an important step for us, especially as we go into newer markets; people will understand right off the bat that we’re back there baking biscuits from scratch. You’ll see the biscuit maker rolling and cutting biscuits, and you’ll also be able to see our biscuit ovens right behind the master biscuit maker.”
Bojangles’ partnered with San Francisco-based brand strategy, retail, and guest experience design firm Tesser, and the first new 3,900-square-foot concept store will open early next year in Greenville, South Carolina.
The designs exterior combines brick, tile, and steel canopies, with soft lighting and planters alongside the building. The new concept also has Wi-Fi, multi-device charging stations, high-top community tables, and booth seating options.
Graphics along the exterior will read “Famous Chicken ‘n Biscuits” and “Made from Scratch Since 1977.”
“It was a big part of our overall strategy to not just have a new building, but to have something that would reflect our heritage and be new and modern,” Icard says. “We think it’s going to be a good launch pad for us into the future.”
In addition to constructing the prototype store, Bojangles’ is already in the process of remodeling three restaurants in the company’s headquarters of Charlotte, North Carolina.
Icard says the design process allowed for the brand to reevaluate the efficiency of the kitchen and incorporate that into the new prototype.
“We didn’t want to just make something pretty on the outside to look at, we wanted to design it from the inside out, and so we’ve really added a lot of features in our kitchen to help make this a good, solid design to carry us into the future,” he says.
By Alex Dixon