DALLAS, Feb. 26 // PRNewswire // -- Wingstop, the chain that took chicken wings from appetizer to center-of-the-plate, is celebrating its 15th anniversary this year. Due to its continued growth, there is a lot to celebrate.
In an NBC news story this week entitled 'Wingstop an Anomaly in Current Restaurant Trend', reporter Scott Freidman said, "Wingstop is one chain that is bucking the national trend."
Wingstop is continuing to grow, even in this economic downturn. In January, Wingstop announced that it had busted its all time record for openings with 71 new locations popping up across the country in 2008. Comparable sales for the year were up 6.5 percent over the year prior.
"We're now routinely churning out over a million wings a day and recently surpassed the 1.5 billion-wings-sold mark," said Jim Flynn, Wingstop CEO. "We brought on a record number of stores last year and hope to continue our rapid growth into new territories."
In the recent NBC report, Flynn talked about Wingstop's windfall from consumers' current distaste for higher ticket restaurants.
"Our concept is built for the value-conscious consumer," said Flynn. "Because it is counter service, there is no tip if you eat in. And, about 75 percent of our business is take-out, where many people add their own drinks or sides at home to further stretch their dollars."
The first Wingstop opened in Garland, Texas in 1994 and the chain franchised its first location in 1998. There are now over 400 locations open in 28 states and approximately 215 under development. Recently, the chain posted 22 consecutive quarters of comp store sales increases.
Wingstop offers restaurants with a nostalgic, aviation-themed atmosphere where the sole focus is on chicken wings, always starting with fresh wings, cooked to order in nine proprietary flavors. The chain also serves boneless wing strips that are made from 100 percent all-white meat chicken breast coated with a proprietary batter and breading. Wingstop features nine wing flavors, including Original Hot, Atomic, Cajun, Mild, Lemon Pepper, Garlic Parmesan, Hawaiian, Teriyaki, and Hickory Smoked BBQ. The wings are always made-to-order and served steaming hot. Customers can also choose from homemade side dishes including fresh-cut seasoned fries, bourbon baked beans, potato salad, creamy cole slaw, vegetable sticks, rolls and assorted dipping sauces.
Wingstop has more than 615 restaurants either open or under development in 32 states and consistently tops industry growth rankings. Wingstop recently won an American Business Award for Best Overall Company and is 125th on Entrepreneur's 2008 Franchise 500 list and was chosen Wing King at the 2006 National Buffalo Wing Festival. Troy Aikman, three-time Super Bowl champion and Hall of Fame quarterback, has served as the chain's national spokesman since 2003.