Wingstop announced plans to extend its global reach by expanding into Canada through an agreement with JPK Capital to develop 100 Wingstop locations across Canada in the next 10 years, with the first set to open in Toronto.
JPK Capital is a single-family office motivated by sustainable change, technological innovation, and long-term vision. Founded in 2017 and led by entrepreneur and founder of Luxury Retreats (sold to Airbnb) Joe Poulin, JPK Capital specializes in providing the long-term capital, strategy, and tech expertise consumer businesses need to scale and grow their operations. JPK Capital's portfolio includes successful restaurant franchises across several countries.
"JPK Capital could not be happier to partner with Wingstop and lead the charge in bringing one of the most successful restaurant brands and the best wings in the world to Canada," says Joe Poulin, founder and CEO of JPK Capital. "As technology entrepreneurs and investors, we have been impressed with Wingstop's investment in innovation and look forward to capitalizing on its proprietary tech stack to offer a best-in-class digital and in-restaurant experience to Canadians."
Wingstop's expansion into Canada comes on the heels of an explosive 2020, where the brand experienced its 17th consecutive year of positive same-store sales growth, rounding out the year with 153 net new units, 21.4% domestic same-store sales growth, and total digital sales north of 60%.
"Wingstop in Canada marks another key step toward our stated goal of becoming a Top 10 Global Brand and further validates the portability of our brand on a global level," adds Nicolas Boudet, president of international at Wingstop. "We currently see Wingstop addressing a need in the Canadian market with our unique brand positioning and product offering and believe this is a market where we can replicate the success we've experienced in the U.S. based on Canadians' appreciation and craving for bold flavor and high-quality product. We are excited to partner with JPK Capital on this endeavor. Joe Poulin and his partners have built a strong track record seeding, operating, and scaling high-growth companies in the technology and hospitality sectors."
Wingstop targeted Canada for its global expansion because of Canada's proximity to the brand's home market in the U.S. as well as similarities in consumer behaviors regarding digital engagement and off-premise dining.
The 100-location agreement starts in Ontario, with the Toronto location anticipated to open in 2022 pending any unexpected or additional Canadian border regulations and closures stemming from COVID-19.