With 68-restaurants, the lower investment restaurant franchise prepares for growth in 2021, building upon its steady sales momentum.

by Nick Powills
1851 Franchise

While many restaurant brands have struggled to weather the pandemic, Wing Zone, a direct delivery chicken wing franchise, has found its footing by maintaining record comparable sales throughout the year. Wing Zone CEO Matt Friedman said the brand stayed on course thanks to its pandemic-proof business model.

While restaurants were battling through a crisis, trying to figure out how to maintain sales and get their products delivered to their customers, we had an advantage in that our model was born and built for off-premise,” said Friedman. “Our franchisees benefited from us not having to rely on the Grubhubs and Door Dashes taking a percent of sales. Our customers benefited from knowing their food was coming straight from kitchen to customer.

Being in the direct delivery business for 25-plus years has helped propel the brand’s sales, Friedman said, noting that the brand’s packaging, handling and delivery of quality products has surpassed the expectations of consumers, especially those used to their food coming from third party.

Also, Wing Zone locations have and continue to benefit from a smaller real estate footprint. The brand can fit into a 1,000 sqft location, and can have units with very minimal seating. Wing Zone locations have less than 20 seats for dine-in, and they’re primarily used for customers waiting for their takeout order.

Because of its operational model, Wing Zone has continued to achieve record system-wide sales numbers. The brand’s highest-performing days of 2019 were during March Madness, NBA playoffs and the start of college and NFL seasons. In 2020, they beat each of those events on sales numbers, despite the pandemic.

Comparable year-over-year sales are:

  • April: +23%
  • May: +42%
  • June: +32%
  • July: +34%
  • August: +24%
  • September: +18%
  • October: +19%

Now, with the brand gaining momentum, Wing Zone hopes to focus on growing more franchises for the remainder of 2020 and into 2021.

“Franchise buyers want to see brands that not only survive, but thrive during the pandemic. That model has been a rare find in the restaurant business,” said Friedman.

In addition to landing new franchisees, the brand will open locations each of the next three months.

The overall investment for a Wing Zone franchise is around $250,000 with a $25,000 franchise fee. Prospective franchisees can get into a proven franchise model for as little as $75,000 down. With average restaurant sales of $900,000+, the ratio of sales to investment leaves Wing Zone franchisees as satisfied as their Flavorholic consumers. For more information, please visit https://wingzonefranchise.com.