Craft Beer Authority Opens Eight New Restaurants and Reports Eleven Percent Increase in System-Wide Sales
Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom, a leader in casual dining known for its vast craft beer selection, delicious handcrafted pizza and distinctive taproom fare, announced today it achieved record high system-wide revenue in 2016, reporting an 11 percent increase from 2015. Additionally, Old Chicago accelerated its national expansion efforts with the signing of 4 franchise development agreements that will bring 20 new locations to markets including Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Montana, Wyoming, Michigan and South Carolina.
“Despite the restaurant industry facing headwinds in 2016, Old Chicago experienced tremendous growth. Our success stems from the increasing demand for craft beer and our concept being known as a place that introduces consumers to regional, hyper local and exclusive craft beers,” said Mike Mrlik, president of Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom. “Our commitment to quality, innovative food and the unparalleled service we provide to our guests has also established Old Chicago as an industry leader and further positions the brand for aggressive nationwide growth in the year ahead.”
Old Chicago experienced record-breaking success in 2016 reporting ten consecutive quarters of positive transaction and average unit volume of $2.8 million, resulting in $263 million in system-wide revenue. Old Chicago also launched its new restaurant prototype in 2015 – a 5,000 square feet build with an additional 1,000 – 1,200 square feet of outdoor patio space, a new kitchen and upgraded bar technology. The continued rollout of this new prototype paired with Old Chicago’s on-going commitment to bringing the most expansive lineup of world-class craft beers through initiatives such as their Explorer Series has helped catapult the brand to its current level of success.
This year, Old Chicago has plans to develop nearly two-dozen new restaurants as part of its aggressive growth strategy to bring its expansive selection of craft beers, taproom classics and handcrafted pizza, to more cities across the country. Currently, the brand is targeting growth in markets such as Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, South Dakota, South Carolina and Texas among others.
A growing brand with more than two decades of successful franchise partnerships, Old Chicago is an established multi-unit concept with proven processes to support franchisees with site selection, lease agreements, facility design, operational training and marketing. To fuel franchise growth, the company is seeking multi-unit operators with business, management and foodservice and/or restaurant experience, and a passion for and commitment to exceptional customer service. For information about franchise opportunities, visit www.ocfranchising.com.
Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom is a leader in the casual dining restaurant segment, specializing in the best local and regional craft beer, serving handcrafted pizza and distinctive taproom fair. Founded in 1976, the crave-able Old Chicago menu has played a complementary role to the vast craft beer selection, a concept differentiator to this day. With over 30 craft beers on tap, Old Chicago is also the home of the World Beer Tour, which rewards members for enjoying 110 of the best craft beers from across the globe. Old Chicago operates in 24 states with more than 109 restaurants nationwide. Visit www.oldchicago.com to learn more and to find the restaurant nearest you. For information about franchise opportunities, visit www.ocfranchising.com.
CraftWorks Restaurants & Breweries, Inc. is the largest craft brewery restaurant operator in the country with nearly 200 franchised and company-owned restaurants primarily operating under the Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom, Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurants, Rock Bottom Restaurants & Breweries and ChopHouse & Brewery brands. As a leader in the craft beer focused casual dining segment, CraftWorks also operates strong regional brands, and employs more than 12,000 people throughout the U.S. All of CraftWorks’ restaurant brands have innovative menus with made-from-scratch food and a vast selection of unique craft beer, as well as unbeatable service and loyalty programs with over a million active members. Based in Broomfield, Colo., CraftWorks is not only committed to serving its loyal guests, but also the communities in which its restaurants operate. The CraftWorks Foundation has contributed millions of dollars, positively impacting communities throughout the country. For additional information about CraftWorks, the Foundation, and its restaurant brands, please visit www.craftworksrestaurants.com.