Three açai bowls from Vitality Bowls.

In this week’s roundup of franchise brands on the move, we journey everywhere from pizza to dessert to the fast-coming bowl category.

Image credits:Marco’s Pizza

Marco’s Pizza

Nearly half of Marco’s Pizza’s franchise network is made up of multi-unit operators. This growth strategy is a part of their rapid expansion plans. The 1,100th Marco’s Pizza is set to open in Dundee, Florida, this July.

The franchisee is Kal Gullapalli, who joined Marco’s in 2021. This will be his 36th store with the company, along with seven in development and another 16 commitments in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. 

“With Marco’s, there’s a clear path to my team owning 100-plus locations,” Gullapalli says in a release. “The brand has a superior product, a sophisticated development team, and vast whitespace across the country.”

The pizza chain has more than 200 stores in development across the country, and is on track to achieve its goal of 1,500 units by the end of 2023. 


Image credits:Marco’s Pizza


The dessert concept JARS by Chef Fabio Viviani signed a multi-unit deal in Southern California after just closing a 10-unit deal in Texas. 

Viviani has partnered with Fransmart to accelerate growth of the concept. This comes before the flagship store is set to open in Chicago in late summer. 

This Southern California deal is helmed by first-time franchisees the Nelms family. 

“We were attracted to the JARS concept for many reasons including its innovative and delicious menu offerings and strong unit economics, but we’re most excited to partner with Fabio to bring his first-ever dessert concept to Southern California,” Bethany Nelms says in a statement.

Image credits:JARS

Checkers and Rally’s

Checkers and Rally’s plans to open 60 stores this year. The drive-thru brand signed 90 store commitments in 2021 and has made 21 franchise agreements that account for 43 stores in the first three months of 2022. 

“Not many brands have the amount of whitespace that we do to offer people an opportunity to put together a strategy on how they can add multiple units to their portfolio right out of the gate,” Robert Bhagwandat, Checkers and Rally’s senior director of franchise development, says.


Image credits:Checkers & Rally’s

Clean Eatz

A franchise focused on “clean,” healthy eating, Clean Eatz, has signed 15 new franchise agreements in the last several months. This brings the total number of franchises in development to 80 going into the third quarter. 

They are on track to have their biggest year in terms of growth in 2022, and have set a goal to have 100 active locations by the end of the year. 

“I’m so proud of what the Clean Eatz franchise has become,” Don Varady, Co-Founder of Clean Eatz, says in a release. “As a concept built on helping educate people on the value and impact of healthy eating, nothing is more inspiring to our cause than seeing the continued system-wide expansion and growing recognition that the franchise builds on quarter by quarter.” 


Image credits:Clean Eatz

Bahama Buck’s

A new location of the shaved ice chain Bahama Buck’s opened on July 6 in Lubbock, Texas. This franchise is locally owned by franchisees Lora Hughes and Brian Bowman. Bahama Buck’s is new to this area of Texas

Image credits:Bahama Buck’s

Del Taco

A new multi-unit franchise deal has been announced by Del Taco in partnership with franchisees Brandon Jones and Tyrone Smith. 

The deal will cover Tuscaloosa, Alabama and Del taco’s first entrance into Mississippi. Jones and Smith have previously owned Sonics and McAlister’s Delis in the region and have almost 45 years of experience owning and operating restaurants. 

“Brandon and Tyrone capture everything we look for in a franchise partner,” Jeff Little, SVP of Development, says. “We look forward to continuing to bring fresh quality Mexican food to the residents of Alabama and for the first time, to the state of Mississippi in partnership with our newest franchisees.

Image credits:Del Taco


Hawaiian poke bowl concept Pokemoto announced it has signed a new franchise agreement in Gallatin, Tennessee. This will be the first Pokemoto in the Tennessee market. 

The chain has now signed 40 new franchise agreements, and currently has eight locations in development. 

“We’re excited to bring Pokemoto to Tennessee with a great franchise partner,” Michael Roper, CEO of Pokemoto, says in a statement. “Over the last few weeks we announced new franchise agreements in Pennsylvania and Texas, now we are adding Tennessee to our expanding portfolio.”

Image credits:Pokemoto

Super Chix

Chicken chain Super Chix has announced the opening of its first restaurant in Mississippi in Flowood. This location is owned and operated by franchisees Bill Latham, and Jud Heubach of the Table 100 Group and John Bean, Principal at the Eat With Us Group. 

This is the brand’s sixth restaurant opening in 2022. 

“We are pleased with our growth in 2022 in various markets across the country,” Darryl Neider, CEO of Super Chix, says. “The Flowood, Mississippi restaurant is the 6th SUPER CHIX restaurant to open in 2022 and we anticipate many additional restaurant openings in the coming  months – next to open will be Macomb, MI, San Jose, CA and East Hanover, NJ in July.”


Image credits:Super Chix

Vitality Bowls

Açaí bowl concept Vitality Bowls has announced it is opening a new location on July 8 in Clemmons, North Carolina. This is the fourth unit in the state.

This location will be the second for franchisee Therese Lopez, who also owns the Vitality Bowls location in Greensboro. 

“We are tremendously excited to bring fresh, nutritious açaí bowls, smoothies and so much more to the Clemmons community with a concept like Vitality Bowls,” Lopez says, “There is a growing need for health-conscious, fast casual options in Clemmons. Through our café, we’ll be able to provide the community with nutrient-rich options to satisfy their cravings.”


Image credits:Vitality Bowls


Bonchon announced its very location in Delaware at 250 Grove Lane. It will be owned and operated by franchise owner Wei Jiang. The fast casual officially opened on July 5. 

“It’s a great day to live in Newark! Local residents are definitely in for a treat, and we are delighted to be the first to bring the ‘Crunch Out Loud’ movement to the state,” Jiang says in a statement. “The Newark community will be full of loyal Bonchon enthusiasts in no time, and we are confident our restaurant will quickly become a go-to mealtime destination.” 

Bonchon has 385-plus locations worldwide and more than 115 in the U.S.

Image credits:Bonchon

Duck Donuts

Duck Donuts signed 13 franchise agreements for 19 shops during the second quarter. The newest Duck Donuts franchisees signed on in Whippany, New Jersey; North Tampa, Florida; Lynn, Massachusetts; Knightdale, North Carolina; Geneva, Illinois; Newtown, Pennsylvania; Wyomissing, Pennsylvania; Mission, Texas; and multi-unit agreements in Raleigh, North Carolina (two); Johnson City and Bristol, Tennessee (two); Scottsdale and Tempe, Arizona (three); Wellington and North Palm Beach, Florida (two); Jacksonville, Florida (two).

“We’re very excited to welcome our newest franchise partners to the Duck Donuts family and look forward to strengthening our footprint across the United States,” Eric Lavinder, Duck Donuts chief development officer, says in a statement. “We are confident that through their enthusiasm, passion for the brand and experience, this group of franchise partners has the ability to launch and manage a very successful business, as they work to introduce the warm, delicious and made-to-order Duck Donuts experience in their markets.”

Since April, Duck Donuts opened in Libertyville, its first Illinois location; Twin Falls, Idaho; Carolina, Puerto Rico; and Burlington, Ontario.

Image credits:Duck Donuts

Dave’s Hot Chicken

Dave’s Hot Chicken announced it inked a franchise agreement with Kal Gullapalli to open locations throughout South Carolina, focusing on the greater Columbia, Charleston, Greenville, and Myrtle Beach areas.

“I’m thrilled to bring Dave’s Hot Chicken to South Carolina. Nashville hot chicken is already delicious as it is, but Dave’s takes it to another level not found anywhere else in the category, and I think it will be a hit in the area,” says Gullapalli, who owns many of the Marco’s Pizza locations throughout South Carolina. “Not only is the food fantastic, but the leadership backing the brand is impeccable, and these appealing factors have set me up well for successful operations.”

Dave’s currently has more than 700 units committed since announcing the franchise initiative in 2019.

Image credits:Dave’s Hot Chicken
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