Fast food chain plans to open upwards of 40 new restaurants in the next year with modernized design.

Checkers & Rally’s launched their new image at the end of 2022. In the next year, they plan to open 40 to 50 new restaurants with their new, modernized look. “We are starting to get more sophisticated franchisees coming to the table,” says Robert Bhagwandat, senior director of Checkers & Rally’s franchise development. “Not only are they signing up for one restaurant but multiple units where they would like to develop a market area.” 

Bhagwandat says their system will start growing rapidly, so he plans to invest back into franchisees and provide incentives that will allow them to expand. In 2023, anyone who opens a new Checkers & Rally’s will have their royalty fees automatically discounted by 50 percent. New multi-unit franchisees who open their third restaurant in a year will have 0 percent royalty fees for their first year. “You’re going to see an acceleration in our incentives as we continue to ramp up with more franchisees coming on board. The more activity we have, the better it is for everybody. It allows the brand to reinvest in the franchise community,” Bhagwandat says. 

With just over 800 restaurants, Checkers & Rally’s is a growing company with many opportunities for multi-unit operators. It is easy for franchisees to get involved with Checkers & Rally’s because the cost of entry is lower than a lot of comparable brands on the market. “There is no dining room and only a 1008-square-foot building with double drive thrus, so we tend to fit on much smaller pieces of real estate, which lowers capital outlay to invest,” Bhagwandat says.

Checkers & Rally’s takes pride in the real-life support they provide. “Franchise business consultants help day-to-day. The marketing and field marketing teams help with promotions to their local markets, and the development team helps them source and place where they will go with their next location,” Bhagwandat says. “The growth potential, low cost of entry, and consistent support lead to a unique opportunity for those interested in partnering with the brand.”  

Online food ordering has grown 300 percent faster than dine-in since 2014 and now accounts for roughly 40 percent of total restaurant sales, according to Zippia. Checkers & Rally’s is in an optimal position to cater and grow with online order demand that is growing at an exceptional rate. “We’re uniquely positioned for this because we don’t have a dining room,” Bhagwandat says. “We are dedicating an e-commerce lane for the delivery drivers and order-ahead customers so they don’t have to get out of their cars. It will be a win-win for the consumers and the brand.”

Checkers & Rally’s fries were recently voted “most craveable” in the hamburger category based on independent research. The brand sets itself apart from other burger franchises. “It’s more than just ketchup or mayo on a hamburger. Our grilled and fried products are seasoned well—the food is packed with flavor,” says Bhagwandat. “We have more flavor and are typically priced cheaper than other similar prominent names, so it’s hard for them to compete with that.”

Checkers & Rally’s is looking for franchisees who understand the quick-service industry and are willing to open more than one restaurant. The brand is especially interested in expanding toward the West Coast in populated areas of California, Nevada, and Arizona—as well as some of the East Coast, specifically focusing on North and South Carolina. “We’re the little secret on the block, but once the secret gets out and starts to take off, it’s going to be hard to jump on the train,” says Bhagwandat. 

For more on franchising with Checkers & Rally’s, visit the company’s website

By Olivia Schuster

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