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"This day is the biggest milestone in the history of Church's Chicken," said president and CEO Harsha Agadi. "The billion dollar mark is the most significant milestone a global restaurant company can achieve. We are on a strong growth path, and doubling the size of the company will be our next major goal. It will take us less than five years to hit the 2 billion dollar mark."
The announcement was made yesterday at a company-wide celebration. The $1 billion in global system sales milestone was achieved in the 52-week period ending Feb. 25, 2006.
With more than 1,500 restaurants worldwide, Church's Chicken(TM) has grown exponentially since the 1952 grand opening of its first location across the street from the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas. Initially intended to be a privately-owned local business in Texas, Church's Chicken(TM) moved into the publicly-traded, national market in 1969.
Financial milestones began at 1974's year-end when there were 487 Church's in 22 states with total revenue of more than $100 million. Five years later international expansion began, and the company subsequently established locations in Puerto Rico, Canada, Mexico, Indonesia, and several other countries. The company was acquired by the Atlanta-based private equity firm Arcapita Inc. in 2004.
In the year that followed, Church's introduced two highly successful new product launches - Spicy bone-in chicken and the $.99 Spicy Chicken Sandwich - which propelled the company to the billion dollar milestone almost two months ahead of schedule. A renewed focus on marketing, solidifying its image as an 'urban brand,' and a shift to value-plus positioning are enabling Church's to compete more successfully against larger competitors.
"This all came together because of improved operations, breakthrough marketing and flawless execution by every individual in the worldwide family of Church's. Church's is a solid brand that is really poised for growth in the future," said Church's Chicken(TM) president and CEO Harsha Agadi. "Our private equity shareholders, Arcapita, have been exemplary in their support, direction and guidance to get us to this milestone."