America’s largest premium QSR Italian chain reveals conversion program with zero down payment, zero franchise fees and zero royalty fees for the first year
Lexington, KY (RestaurantNews.com) Fazoli’s – the renowned, Lexington-based brand known for serving up premium Italian dishes at a great value – is confirming its position as a trailblazer in the industry with the creation of a compelling new franchise program designed to revitalize restaurants.
On the heels of an all-time record-breaking May, Fazoli’s CEO Carl Howard kicked off the summer with the launch of Fazoli’s 2020 Franchise Incentive Program, with a spotlight on the brand’s aggressive conversion strategy. With the new 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. The renowned Italian brand has relaxed many of its conversion requirements so operators can get a 2,000- to 3,500-square-foot restaurant open for under $350,000.
“We want to be first to market a program this paramount,” Howard said. “This is going to be huge not only for Fazoli’s, but for the restaurant industry as a whole. This is the first time in our brand’s history that we have ever launched a program this aggressive. Our sales are stronger than ever as we come out of a record-breaking month. With this program, we are providing a low-risk, fast-track path to become part of the Fazoli’s Franchise Family. Our menu is unmatched, our value is unrivaled and our sales are stronger than ever – there is truly no better time to join us.”
In an effort to revitalize the restaurant industry, Fazoli’s is encouraging challenged quick-service or fast-casual restaurant operators to convert their existing shells into a Fazoli’s. Buildings with potential for conversion must have a drive-thru or be equipped for the addition of one. Fazoli’s development team will work to draft a site and floor plan design within 48 hours, with the conversion complete in only 45-60 days. The only pre-opening expenses are soft costs for advertising, training and support of the Fazoli’s on-site team.
“The pandemic hit our industry extremely hard,” Howard said. “Unfortunately, many restaurants have closed, leaving empty buildings. Empty buildings are lost dollars. Our entire team cares deeply about our industry and wants to see it thrive. We believe this conversion plan with zero down, zero franchise and royalty fees, and very low cost to build, will be a big contributor in helping the restaurant industry rebuild and recover.”
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 2020” 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.