Chicken Salad Chick is reporting 2019 as its most successful year in company history, completing Q4 with 40 new restaurants opened throughout the year, including its first locations in Ohio and Illinois. The banner year for the brand also marked the grand opening of co-founder Stacy Brown’s high-volume franchise location in her hometown of Rome, Georgia. The fast-casual concept also signed 26 franchise agreements in 2019 to develop 60 new restaurants over the next several years in target markets such as Kansas City, Kansas; Austin, Texas; and Boca Raton, Florida. In addition to this tremendous system growth, the brand achieved its 16th consecutive quarter – fourth consecutive year – of same-store sales growth, reporting $153.3 million in system sales and a 4.4 percent increase in comp sales year over year.
“As I reflect on the tremendously successful year that 2019 was for Chicken Salad Chick, I’m incredibly proud of all that we’ve accomplished and know that none of it would have been possible without the tireless work of our outstanding team and dedicated franchise owners. Amazing things can happen when everyone is aligned in a shared purpose; for us, that’s always been spreading joy, enriching lives and serving others,” says Scott Deviney, CEO of Chicken Salad Chick. “Looking at the year ahead, as our brand is poised for another year of significant growth, we’re energized to keep the momentum going and continue our accelerated expansion plans to bring more Chicks to communities across key regions in the U.S.”
Chicken Salad Chick has become one of the fastest-growing restaurant chains in the U.S., more than quadrupling in size in the last four years, with systemwide sales increasing by 40.1 percent and unit count by 38.5 percent in 2019 alone. The brand’s compounding success over the past several years has fueled a surge in franchise development and positioned it for further growth in 2020. Chicken Salad Chick plans to open more than 50 new restaurants this year throughout the Midwest and South in states like Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Virginia, Texas, Arkansas and Florida. These efforts, coupled with the brand’s concentric circle growth strategy, help to support its greater development goal to open 250-plus locations within the next five years, bringing the total unit count to 400 by 2025.
As a result of the brand’s impressive growth and year-over-year results, Eagle Merchant Partners sold Chicken Salad Chick to prominent private equity firm, Brentwood Associates in November 2019 to add to the company’s robust consumer portfolio.
To support its aggressive national growth strategy, Chicken Salad Chick is targeting franchise development throughout the Midwest region, specifically in states like Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, Indiana, West Virginia and Virginia, and is actively seeking individuals with an entrepreneurial spirit who possess high energy and enthusiasm about the brand, marketing skills and the ability to manage a strong team. Restaurant experience is preferred. Interested candidates should have a minimum net worth of $600,000 and liquid assets of at least $150,000. Franchisees can expect the initial investment to be approximately $515,000 – $683,000 with a $50,000 initial franchise fee.
The Chicken Salad Chick concept was established in 2008 by co-founders, Stacy and Kevin Brown. Under the leadership of CEO Scott Deviney and the Chicken Salad Chick team, the company now has 149 restaurants currently open in 16 states and remains a standout brand within the fast casual segment.