Special Report | August 2015

The QSR 50 Burger Segment

The top burger brands in quick service.

The evolution of the limited-service restaurant industry continued in 2014, as traditional powerhouses faltered while fast casuals and other rising concepts asserted themselves as forces to be reckoned with. For the first time in the history of the QSR 50, a fast casual entered the top 10, as Panera Bread leapfrogged KFC to land a spot in the industry elite. Meanwhile, Subway ceded the No. 2 spot to Starbucks after an $800 million sales tumble, Chick-fil-A grew by $700 million to become larger than every pizza brand in the country, and Wingstop claimed the biggest jump of the year, with an 11-spot leap.

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Ranksort descendingQSR 50 RankCompany/Chain Name2014 U.S. Systemwide Sales (millions)2014 U.S. Average Sales per Unit (thousands)Number of Franchised Units in 2014Number of Company Units in 2014Total Units in 2014Total Change in Units from 2013
11McDonald's$35,447.0$2,500.012,8361,51414,35072
24Burger King*$8,640.1$1,210.07,090527,142-13
35Wendy's*$8,512.8$1,594.04,8958855,780-41
413Sonic Drive-In*$4,099.4$1,153.03,1283893,5170
515Carl's Jr./Hardee's$3,569.7$1,330.02,1287852,91355
619Jack in the Box$3,179.8$1,412.01,8194312,250-1
723Whataburger$1,801.1$2,327.011865677416
826Five Guys$1,208.3$1,081.07853781,16345
927Culver's$1,035.7$2,015.7521752833
1029Steak 'n Shake$955.8$1,800.01164145307
1133Checkers/Rally's*$717.2$908.047133180220
1238White Castle$653.5$1,322.00391391-9
1342In-n-Out Burger*$584.6$1,975.0030130110

*Includes figures estimated by Technomic Inc.