Rise Southern Biscuits & Righteous Chicken introduced a heated locker system at its flagship location in Durham, North Carolina, to enhance contactless ordering options for guests. This convenient, new structure keeps delivery and to-go orders hot and fresh, while reducing customer and employee interaction.
“I expect these innovative food locker systems to become commonplace in the U.S. as customers seek safer ways to visit restaurants,” says Tom Ferguson, founder and CEO of Rise. “The lockers are glass cubicles stacked on top of one another, each equipped with its own heating system to keep food piping hot, even if you pick up your order an hour after it was made.”
This new installation builds upon the Rise brand revamp, which began in spring of 2019. To help create consistency across franchise locations, Ferguson traveled to each location over a six-month period evaluating products, equipment and workflow. After getting a clearer picture, he decided it was best to start fresh and focus on what Rise does best—biscuits. The new menu placed biscuits at its core, along with the quick service restaurant’s "Righteous Chicken," which is tenderized and brined in buttermilk before being fried to a golden brown. Along with menu changes, the rebranding also involved implementing delivery and to-go services.
“I never thought I would do delivery, that was not in my original vision,” says Ferguson. “However, I am thankful I pushed myself past the lines I drew in the sand, because we fully implemented our delivery and to-go services in February 2020, which left us in good shape once the pandemic hit.”
To create a more comfortable environment for guests during the pandemic, Rise also implemented kiosk ordering and curbside pick-up. Adding to the contactless ordering options, the new locker system creates an even safer way for customers to enjoy their food and keep the menu items fresh. The system is being installed in two additional corporate locations in North Carolina this March, and Ferguson is encouraging franchisees to follow suit.
Recently named to QSR magazine's 40/40 List for 2021: America's Hottest Startup Fast Casuals, Rise is partnered with Fransmart, the industry-leading franchise development company behind household brands like Five Guys Burgers & Fries and The Halal Guys, as its exclusive franchising partner to grow the brand.
“Tom is building on a solid foundation of operational excellence, so it is no surprise that he continues to innovate and pilot the latest technologies in order to help blaze a path for Rise franchisees,” says Dan Rowe, Fransmart CEO. “With prime real-estate availability, attractive lease options and a protocol to convert existing units quickly and inexpensively, now more than ever is the time to invest in a brand like Rise.”
Rise is currently looking for experienced franchisees and qualified investors to introduce the concept to major media markets across the country.