Dave's Hot Chicken Sets 600-Unit Goal

    Industry News | July 26, 2021
    Dave's Hot Chicken menu items
    Dave's Hot Chicken
    In 2021 thus far, 13 new operators have signed on for 154 units, bringing the total to 35 operators and 420 units open or in development.

    After a strong start to 2021 with a number of signed deals for over 100 additional locations and several openings in new markets, leading Nashville hot chicken concept Dave’s Hot Chicken is continuing to generate more momentum as we reach the halfway point of the year. The brand has consistently signed new agreements with seasoned operators and is having record-breaking openings one after another. 

    Continuing under the leadership of VP of Franchise Development, Shannon Swenson, Dave’s Hot Chicken has expanded its reach across the country with new deals signed in several key markets. In 2021 thus far, 13 new operators have signed on for 154 units, bringing the total to 35 operators and 420 units open or in development. This has expanded the brand’s presence into Boston, Massachusetts; Austin, Waco, New Braunfels and San Marcos, Texas; Orlando, Florida; East Pennsylvania and multiple communities throughout New Jersey. Dave’s has set its sights on the Midwest, Northeast and Southeast to continue growing its presence, with the goal of having 600 units committed and opening locations in every major market across the country.

    “We’ve fine-tuned our recipe for growth at Dave’s Hot Chicken and our strong performance so far in 2021 is proof,” says Swenson. “I think we have positioned ourselves nicely to continue building on this momentum for the rest of the year as we bring on more qualified operators and open more locations. We really do have something special here at Dave’s Hot Chicken.” 

    In addition to these newly signed deals, Dave’s Hot Chicken has continued making a splash with recent openings. Seven new locations have opened throughout the country in 2021, including in Northridge, Sherman Oaks and Indio, California; Tualatin, Oregon; Dallas, Texas; Las Vegas, Nevada and a second location in Toronto, Ontario, with lines wrapping around the block and fans waiting for hours at each of these openings.

    “It’s exciting to see our proof of concept as we expand to markets outside of California – our volumes have been consistent and we’ve been reaching a whole new set of demographics,” says Bill Phelps, CEO of Dave’s Hot Chicken. “Whether it was in Texas or in Oregon, we’ve seen a tremendous turnout, and for us it’s validation that we have something really special here that isn’t just unique to our home state of California. We’ve really set ourselves apart as the hottest fast-casual brand out there right now, and there’s no question about it based on the numbers.”

    Founded by classically-trained chef Dave Kopushyan and three friends in early 2017, Dave’s Hot Chicken initially opened as a parking lot pop-up, with lines quickly wrapping around the block. Since then, the brand has exploded in popularity and now has 17 brick-and-mortar locations in the U.S. and Canada. Today, the fast-casual brand has its sights set on growing throughout the United States and currently has more than 420 units committed in a little over a year of announcing the franchise initiative. 

    Specializing in hot chicken tenders and sliders, with spice levels ranging from “No Spice” to “Reaper,” each restaurant also serves sides of house-made Kale Slaw, creamy Mac & Cheese and crispy Fries or Cheese Fries. 

    Dave’s Hot Chicken offers a robust business model, including national and local marketing support, proven systems, manuals and operating procedures, as well as assistance with site selection. As the brand expands, it is seeking qualified, experienced, and passionate restaurant operators and franchise groups to develop the concept in key markets. 

    News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by QSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.