With a number of newly signed deals in the first half of the year, along with menu innovations, fan-favorite wing concept Wing It On! jumped out to a strong start in 2021 as it continues to aggressively grow and establish itself as the premiere wings and wiches brand.
So far in 2021, five new operators have signed agreements for 13 locations across the Eastern and Southern U.S., expanding their presence to markets like Atlanta, Dallas-Fort Worth and Orlando. Now, Wing It On! is focused on continuing to build its footprint in fast-growing areas along the East Coast and Southern U.S., with a priority focus on Long Island, Boston, Raleigh-Durham, Central Florida and Houston. The brand is aiming to have 25 units committed by the end of the year.
“This has been an exciting year for our team as we take the next step in the evolution of Wing It On!,” says Matt Ensero, CEO and founder of Wing It On!. “From our growth on the franchising side to the new menu innovations introduced to our fans, we have a lot of things in the works for the rest of 2021. I anticipate even more wins along the way for us.”
These newly signed deals are not the only excitement Wing It On! has experienced in 2021. Two new locations have opened so far in Sandy Springs, Georgia and Spring, Texas, respectively, both to rave reviews from fans and strong sales numbers. At least three additional locations are set to open in the second half of this year. Wing It On! has also generated waves on the consumer side. Back in January, they introduced thigh wings to their menu to offset the shortage and high cost of chicken wings. The new menu item was a success, helping increase sales volume by 27% at participating locations. A new Nashville hot chicken sandwich and sauce option for wings and boneless tenders was introduced in March to high praise from fans. Wiches Wednesday, where all sandwiches are only $5 every Wednesday, launched in June, helping expand the fan experience beyond wings and to their fresh, made-to-order, savory sandwiches.
In May, Wing It On! partnered with a leading provider in specialized brand protection services, Steritech. Steritech plays a key role in ensuring the highest standards of cleanliness. This makes certain that food safety best practices remain an integral part of the franchise’s core values as the brand expands across the country. They will also factor in coaching and extending the passion for operational excellence at all Wing It On! locations.
Creating an exceptional wing experience goes back to the early 2000s when Ensero, and his friends would argue amongst themselves every football Sunday about who was driving 30-plus minutes to pick up wings from some of their favorite spots in surrounding towns. However, the distance and Styrofoam take out boxes would always result in soggy and cold wings once they got home. Ensero had enough, hence, Wing It On! was born. He opened the first Wing It On! in his hometown Waterbury, Connecticut, serving only the crispiest of wings that all true wing nuts crave.
Wing It On! has earned a loyal fan following redefining the standards for fresh and crispy wings. With a simplified, innovative menu, fans of the brand have experienced the true buffalo-quality wing cooked and sauced or seasoned to perfection. In addition to its famous wings, Wing It On! also serves chicken sandwiches and customizable seasoned fries.
The attractiveness of the franchise model is only enhanced with its flexible design footprint. Takeout and delivery drive nearly 90 percent of store revenues, meaning overhead is kept low with just a small portion of the restaurant reserved for dine-in. Locations can range from less than 1,000 square feet up to 1,700 square feet, with the “sweet spot” being 1200-1500 sq ft stores.
Offering a seamless digital experience that franchisees can leverage for online ordering, a mobile app and third-party delivery integration software, the Wing It On! operating model fosters a low initial investment and higher sales per square foot. Wing It On! also offers a food truck franchise option to drive additional revenues, leveraging the franchisees existing brick and mortar location and staff.
As the brand continues to expand into key markets, Wing It On! is actively seeking qualified single-unit and multi-unit owners looking to invest with an emerging brand in the fast-growing chicken segment that keeps operations simple. Ideal franchisees should have business or operations experience and a passion for the restaurant industry – if you’re a wing nut, even better. Franchisees must have a minimum net worth of $400,000 and meet the minimum liquid assets requirement of $100,000.