Since the economic downturn, fast casual has been a growing segment of the restaurant industry. According to Technomic, annual sales have reached $23 billion in recent years. From a consumer's perspective, fast casual provides a dining destination that offers a quality experience with added convenience and value. This year, Boneheads Grilled Fish and Chicken offered something for both consumers and franchisees, which contributes to an aggressive plan for expansion and franchisee support in 2014.

"Our focus in 2013 was to elevate Boneheads as a premier fast-casual destination for both consumers and franchisees in the Southeast, including developing strategies and devising a plan for growth in the coming years," says James Walker, Boneheads board of director member. "Now that we have the infrastructure in place and a firm handle on our customer's needs, we are dedicated to finding the right franchise partners to bring Boneheads into new markets across the country and internationally."

For Boneheads, its current success derives from a dedicated corporate support team and board of directors. The group is committed to the success of its franchisees by supporting them from the early stages to long after they open their doors. The newest member of the corporate team, Brett Sheley, arrives as director of franchise sales to support entrepreneurs as they make the important decision of choosing to become a Boneheads franchisee. Sheley comes from eMaximation as the director of sales and client services and has more than 10 years of franchise operations experience, including working with restaurant concepts Steak and Shake and Church’s Chickens.

In addition to Sheley, Boneheads also announces Brooke Humphries as marketing and franchise support coordinator and Randy Morris as part of the franchise sales and support team. “In addition to adding team members to support Boneheads’ growth, we also are building systems based on tomorrow’s needs, including training, marketing, and real estate programs that will support our concept as we add more locations over the next three to five years,” Walker says.

The Southeast continues to be a focus for growth for Atlanta-based Boneheads. The brand has an additional corporate location under construction in Lithonia, Georgia, as well as a new franchise location opening soon in Shreveport, Louisiana and has franchise interest in Arkansas. That said, Boneheads has also proven to be a desirable restaurant in other markets. Its first location in Austin, opened earlier this year; a Boneheads is scheduled to open in College Station, Texas, early next year, and the brand has garnered interest from franchisees both in California and overseas. 2014 is projected to be Boneheads' best year for growth, both in number of franchise locations and in system-wide sales.

"I look forward to joining this team and contributing to the franchise growth of Boneheads as we head into a new year," says Brett Sheley, Boneheads’ newly appointed director of franchise sales. "With a focus on quality ingredients, menu items, and customer satisfaction, we are dedicated to finding entrepreneurs that have the passion to bring a unique concept like Boneheads to their local market."

Fast Casual, Growth, News, Boneheads