Award-Winning Fast-Casual Chain Experiences Success at First Franchised Location
Burger 21, a new better burger franchise founded by the owners of The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc., is celebrating the one-year anniversary of its first franchised restaurant located at the Shoppes at Millenia in Orlando, Fla.
Burger 21 Millenia is locally owned and operated by Dennis Saller, Burger 21’s very first franchisee, and his two daughters, Whitney Prieto and Mary Alison Saller. The family aims to open at least two more locations over the next several years.
“I’m very pleased with how the community has embraced our restaurant during our first year in business,” said Saller. “As first-time franchise owners, we didn’t know what to expect, but our first year has far exceeded our expectations and we have built a solid foundation with a loyal customer following that will help our business continue to grow.”
In the past year, the “beyond the better burger” concept has doubled its number of operating restaurants. Today, Burger 21 has nine restaurants open and 18 franchised locations in development across the U.S.
The Tampa-based company is continuing to target additional areas in the Greater Orlando market for future franchise expansion including Dr. Phillips, Winter Park, Winter Garden, Altamonte Springs, Lake Mary and Sanford.
Burger 21 began franchising in fall 2011 and launched an aggressive growth initiative to bring its crafted burger creations and signature shakes to more cities across the country. Since that launch two years ago, the brand has signed franchise agreements with 13 different entities in nine states to develop a total of 23 franchised restaurants. As an affiliate of Front Burner Brands and sister concept of The Melting Pot Restaurants, Burger 21 benefits from an established distribution network that has allowed it to expand rapidly across the country with locations now open or in development in the Northeast, Southeast, and most recently, the Southwest.
The company credits brand differentiation and menu diversity largely for its success. In addition to 10 unique crafted Certified Angus Beef burgers, Burger 21 offers 10 non-beef burgers, including the Black Bean Burger, the Ahi Tuna burger and the Chicken Marsala burger, as well as one rotating burger of the month. Approximately, 40 percent of burgers ordered at Burger 21 are non-beef burger alternatives and 60 percent of burgers sold are all-beef. Burger 21 also focuses on providing premium ingredients like toasted brioche buns, pickled cucumbers, applewood-smoked bacon and sweet potato fries with toasted marshmallow sauce.
Burger 21 recently was named one of Fast Casual’s Top 100 “Movers and Shakers” of 2013. The concept ranked No. 22 based on its variety of innovative recipes and recent expansion. In addition, the franchise’s gluten-free menu received the No. 1 ranking in the “Top 10 Menu Innovations” category and Mark Johnston was recognized as one of the “Top 20 People” for his strategic leadership in the growth and development of the brand.
Burger 21 has developed a unique culture in its restaurants that includes a strong commitment to the communities it serves. Since its inception in fall 2010, the company has provided over $50,000 in contributions as part of its “B Charitable” initiative, in which it donates 10 percent of its restaurants’ sales to local schools and charities on the 21st of each month.
Burger 21 is seeking single- and multi-unit operators with restaurant experience to join its upscale fast-casual dining concept. Franchisee candidates should have a minimum net worth of $500,000 and liquid assets of at least $200,000 per unit. Burger 21 will be developed through both single-unit agreements and Area Development Agreements. Depending on the real estate site selected, franchisees can expect the total initial investment for one restaurant to be approximately $414,495 – $832,495. The initial franchise fee is $40,000; however, reduced franchise fees apply for Area Development Agreements of four or more units.
With nine locations open in Tampa Bay, Fla., Orlando, Fla., Voorhees, N.J., Atlanta, Ga., and Charlotte, N.C., and 18 in development in seven states, Burger 21 is a “beyond the better burger” fast-casual franchise concept founded in 2010. Burger 21 is a chef-inspired brand with offerings including 21 unique burger creations ranging from hand-crafted, freshly ground Certified Angus Beef to chicken, turkey, vegetarian, shrimp and tuna burgers, specialty salads, all-beef hot dogs, hand-breaded chicken tenders and an extensive shake bar including hand-crafted shakes, floats and sundaes. Burger 21 is an affiliate of Front Burner Brands, a restaurant management company headquartered in Tampa, Fla. For more information, visit http://www.burger21.com.
Front Burner Brands (formerly known as TGS Restaurant Management) is a restaurant management company headquartered in Tampa, Fla. It is affiliated with the corporate owners of and its management services extended to The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc., founded in 1975 with more than 135 locations in North America and more than 25 locations currently in development, Burger 21 with nine locations open in Tampa Bay, Fla., Orlando, Fla., Voorhees, N.J., Atlanta, Ga., and Charlotte, N.C., and 18 in development in seven states, GrillSmith with six locations in the Tampa Bay area. For more information, visit http://www.frontburnerbrands.com.