Fast-Casual Sandwich Franchise Navigates COVID-19 With Strategic Growth Through Franchising, Menu and Operational Innovation and Community Involvement
Throughout the pandemic, restaurants around the globe have been challenged to rise up to the occasion, adapting service and business models to fit the new norm. Through strategic growth, extraordinary innovation and a forward-thinking mindset Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop has taken this challenge head-on. After initial uncertainty, the brand has bolstered both its menu and franchise opportunity and is now reporting strong performance and growth, having signed 18 development agreements during the pandemic.
From adapting operations to prioritizing customer and employee safety to unveiling a new menu, the brand’s success can be attributed to commitment to innovation this quarter. Earlier this month, Capriotti’s partnered with Snake River Farms, the premier producer of American Wagyu steaks and roasts, to make beef that is served in top-rated restaurants worldwide available at shops across the nation. Beyond the menu, Capriotti’s has also expanded its franchise opportunity to include ghost kitchens and virtual brands that cater to consumer demand for delivery, catering and online ordering. Ghost kitchens offer a low-cost entry into urban markets – making it simple and cost-effective for franchise partners to serve fan-favorite subs to communities across the nation. Capriotti’s also has plans to roll out nine virtual brands that serve reimagined versions of extraordinary classic subs to fans through delivery platforms like GrubHub and Door Dash.
Capriotti’s has been able to maintain growth through franchising this quarter with seven ghost kitchen opportunities under development and 11 area development agreements for traditional stores, making up a total of 40 restaurants slated to open across the United States in 2020 with another 180 shops in the pipeline for development for coming years. During the pandemic, the brand was also ranked #17 on Fast Casual‘s Movers and Shakers list for its outstanding performance and commitment to innovation.
Amid change and uncertainty, Capriotti’s has also remained dedicated to serving the community. Franchise partners across the nation have worked to donate several hundred meals to essential workers to thank them for their efforts in keeping communities healthy. Las Vegas shops participated in the Las Vegas Frontline Food Fund’s GoFundMe efforts in which all funds were used to purchase more than 4,500 individual meals from Las Vegas restaurants for frontline workers. In addition to donations and fundraising, the brand supported front-line workers on a national level through BOGO promotions for nurses, law enforcement officers and emergency medical responders.
“Restaurants around the globe have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and we are no exception. The last few months have been challenging, but keeping our people and our customers safe while supporting our communities has been and continues to be our number one priority,” said Ashley Morris, CEO of Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop. “Through ghost kitchens and virtual brands, we hope to offer fans peace of mind and comfort when they are ordering our extraordinary subs, while providing a low-cost, high demand franchise option for interested franchise partners.”
With the top 25 percent of shops averaging $1.1 million average unit volume and an initial average investment of $376,000 with high growth potential, Capriotti’s is a profitable and rewarding franchise investment. The brand is backed by a corporate leadership team that offers a continuous support program for franchisees, called CAPMastery. This online and field program provides significant support to franchisees for marketing, retail sales, operations and growth strategies through every stage of their ownership. Capriotti’s plans to expand to 500 locations by 2025 through franchising, with franchise opportunities for single and multi-unit developers. For more information about Capriotti’s or its franchise opportunity, visit ownacapriottis.com.