Bojangles’ Restaurants Inc., a fast-growing chicken chain, opened its 600th location, a growth milestone the legacy brand has achieved as it continues to build its market presence primarily in the Southeast.

With one restaurant opening every six days, Bojangles’ is outpacing the growth rate of its national competitors, company officials report. The Charlotte, North Carolina–based chain expects to open 55 to 60 locations throughout the Southeast this year, adding new restaurants in more than 25 market areas, including Atlanta, Georgia; Birmingham, Alabama; Orlando, Florida; Richmond, Virginia; and Nashville, Knoxville, and Tri-Cities, Tennessee. This year’s expansion is part of Bojangles’ long-term growth plan to have 1,000 units open by 2020.

“We approach growth in a way to build toward our strength as much as possible,” says Eric Newman, EVP of Bojangles’ Restaurants Inc. “As we continue to grow, our focus will remain on building market share and elevating brand awareness within the areas we do business even as we gradually expand and strengthen that footprint.”

In addition to opening new restaurants, average unit volumes for the popular chicken-and-biscuit concept continue to climb with the average restaurant’s sales registering more than $1,725,000. Steadily increasing revenue and sales each year, Bojangles’ is on track to reach $1 billion in system-wide sales in the third quarter of 2014.

Denise Lee Yohn: QSR's Marketing Guru, Growth, News, Bojangles