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Why So Many Multi-Unit Franchise Operators Are Growing With MOOYAH Burgers, Fries & Shakes

In 2020, franchise veteran Ted Beaman, along with his two business partners, Sean McCullough and Greg Stevens, entered into a 10-unit franchise deal with MOOYAH Burgers, Fries & Shakes, the 90-plus-unit burger franchise that is rapidly expanding in markets across the country. Beaman is just one of an increasingly large number of multi-unit franchise owners with MOOYAH, which is emerging as a go-to investment opportunity for growth-oriented career franchise owners.

“When my partners and I were looking for opportunities to expand our portfolio, we weren’t looking for a single-unit restaurant that we could operate ourselves and then potentially spin out to one or two more,” Beaman said. “We wanted an opportunity to take a major bite out of a territory and quickly grow the business.”

Beaman says MOOYAH was the perfect brand for that strategy, thanks to its best-in-class product, high customer loyalty, and excellent available territory.

“We are an experienced team, and we saw a potential partnership with MOOYAH as a major investment opportunity,” he said. “Starting a business from scratch can be fun, but it’s slow and extremely risky. We were looking for an entry point into a business that we could hit the ground running with and quickly scale.”

Still, Beaman says his team was not willing to partner with just any brand that could offer the growth opportunities they were seeking. “We’re not going to invest in a brand that we don’t believe in as guests,” he said. “Being a fan of the product and service is critical to us, and MOOYAH really checked every box in that respect.”

Beaman, Stevens and McCullough opened their first MOOYAH location in December of 2020 and have since opened two more, putting them on track to fulfill their 10-unit agreement.

“Ted’s team is representative of the shift we’ve experienced to larger, more sophisticated multi-unit owners entering our system,” said Doug Willmarth, MOOYAH’s president. “In 2021, we recorded seven deals for franchisees to develop 39 units.” 

Not only is MOOYAH appealing to new multi-unit owners, Willmarth says it is increasingly proving to be a reliable diversification option for current multi-brand franchise owners.

“Savvy franchise investors are looking for opportunities to grow without cannibalizing their existing business or oversaturating their markets, and MOOYAH is the perfect complement to so many existing portfolios in that respect,” Willmarth said. “If you own 10 chicken franchises in a smaller market, your only option for growth with that brand is to expand into a new market, which can introduce any number of operational challenges. A better option is to partner with a complementary brand like MOOYAH, which will not compete with your existing restaurants, has similar operational systems, and has excellent territories still available for growth.”

One multi-brand franchise owner who joined MOOYAH as a way to diversify his portfolio is Marc Verderame, a Golden Corral franchise owner who signed a 15-unit agreement with MOOYAH — the brand’s largest development deal to date — in 2021. 

“In addition to this deal with Marc, we’ve signed franchise agreements with owners from Zaxby’s, Del Taco, and a range of other restaurant brands that complement our offering,” Willmarth said. “That shows that savvy operators are seeing a lucrative opportunity to grow with MOOYAH.”

As Beaman and his team prepare to open their fourth MOOYAH location, he says the brand’s growth prospects are substantial and apply not only to development but also to store-level sales.

“One of the reasons we are so eager to go with MOOYAH is that, as loved as the brand is by its customers, it has not yet reached market saturation yet,” he said. “So not only do we have tremendous growth opportunities available geographically, we also see a ton of brand growth coming, which is going to drive sales across the whole system. As we develop more stores, brand awareness goes up, and as brand awareness goes up, so do sales.”

The investment to develop a MOOYAH ranges from $477,918 to $989,793. Learn more at https://franchise.mooyah.com/.