Iconic Italian brand signs record 20 agreements in a year – 11 in Q1 alone – to add 50 locations to pipeline
Lexington, KY (Restaurant News Release) With 11 straight months of record-breaking sales under its belt, Fazoli’s is continuing its winning streak by adding a new franchise development milestone to its impressive list of recent achievements.
Fazoli’s CEO Carl Howard announced today that the company has signed 11 area development agreements in Q1 alone. Through this record-setting accomplishment, the iconic Italian brand added 36 new locations to its pipeline throughout California, Florida, Kansas, Oklahoma and Tennessee. During Fazoli’s fiscal year, which just ended, the brand signed a record-setting 20 new franchise agreements to develop 50 locations. This number surpasses the most agreements the brand has signed in a single year in its 33-year history. Additionally, over the last seven months, Fazoli’s has hosted 19 Discovery Days for prospective franchisees to meet with its leadership team and learn more about becoming an operator for the brand. The brand is poised to continue its historic growth.
“To say we came out of the gate strong in Q1 would be an understatement,” Howard said. “Our team has been focused on our aggressive growth strategy and capitalizing on opportunities to add new franchisees to the Fazoli’s Family. On the heels of our most successful year in brand history, and with Q1 sales following this monumental trend, new and existing franchisees across the country are certainly noticing that Fazoli’s is an industry leader with a strong future.”
Fazoli’s franchise agreements in Q1 were fueled, in large part, by the brand’s unrivaled conversion strategy. Since June, the brand has been maximizing development through its 2020 Franchise Incentive Program, which encourages challenged quick-service or fast-casual restaurant operators to convert their existing shells into a Fazoli’s. With the conversion incentive, franchisees can sign a short five-year term, versus the typical 15-year commitment, with zero down payment, zero franchise fees and zero royalty fees in the first year. Fazoli’s also relaxed many of its conversion requirements so operators can get a 2,000- to 3,500-square-foot restaurant open for under $350,000.
New and current franchisees are taking advantage of the conversion opportunity. Fazoli’s kicked off 2021 with three grand openings in Clermont, Florida; Statesboro, Georgia; and Sioux City, Iowa. Two of the three new locations were conversions. The brand has 11 conversions targeted for the new fiscal year, with even more on the horizon. For the remainder of 2021, Fazoli’s is on track for a record-breaking number of openings with 10 to 15 new locations expected to open during the calendar year.
“There has never been a better time to join the Fazoli’s Franchise Family,” Howard said. “What we’re doing on the development side is clearly working. With our aggressive conversion strategy that offers compelling incentives, Fazoli’s franchise interest is undoubtedly at an all-time high. Couple our unmatched conversion strategy with 11 months of double-digit month-over-month sales, and you get a best-in-class brand with staying power.”
Founded in 1988 in Lexington, Ky., Fazoli’s owns and operates nearly 220 restaurants in 28 states, making it the largest premium QSR Italian chain in America. Fazoli’s prides itself on serving premium quality Italian food, fast, fresh and friendly. Menu offerings include freshly prepared pasta entrees, Submarinos® sandwiches, salads, pizza and desserts – along with its unlimited signature breadsticks. Fazoli’s is a winner of FastCasual and Steritech’s 2020 Excellence in Food Safety Award and was named one of the “Top 200 Franchises in 2021” by Franchise Business Review, a FastCasual “Brand of the Year,” and an Entrepreneur 2018 “Franchise 500.” CEO Carl Howard was named among the most influential restaurant CEOs in the country in 2020 by Nation’s Restaurant News, was recognized as one of the top 25 industry leaders on FastCasual’s 2020 Top 100 Movers and Shakers list, and he and his team were recipients of the 2020 American Business Awards Gold Stevie Awards in Food & Beverage for Company of the Year, Achievement in Management and Human Resources Team of the Year.