April 20, 2010 // Franchising.com // Arlington, VA — Elevation Burger, a Northern Virginia based chain known for its tasty organic burgers and patented fresh cut fries cooked in olive oil has signed a multi-unit franchising deal with entrepreneur family Gene and Mary Hendifar and brothers Paul and Jason Hendifar for Los Angeles. The innovative Elevation Burger chain is rapidly expanding its organic burger concept throughout the United States and the Middle East. There are currently seven Elevation Burger locations: Falls Church and Arlington, VA, National Harbor, MD, Montclair, NJ; Wynnewood, PA (outside Philadelphia); Coral Springs, FL and Austin, TX. All are franchised locations except the original Elevation Burger in Falls Church. Elevation Burger expects to have a total of 15 to 20 restaurants (three company-owned) operating by the end of 2010, with over 60 total new restaurants in development. Upcoming openings include Washington, DC and suburbs; New York, NY; Dallas, TX; and Philadelphia, PA suburbs. At its current growth rate, Elevation Burger expects to have 100 locations nationwide by the end of 2013. Fransmart, the company that helped launch the ultra successful Five Guys Burgers & Fries chain, is leading the franchise development plans for Elevation Burger.
The Hendifar family have been involved in the restaurant business for over 30 years and are experienced multi-unit chain operators.
"A product is what makes a brand. At Elevation, we believe their burger is superior to all other fast casual products out there. Consumers are asking for a product that is healthy and natural. Elevation has a commitment to its consumers as well as to the environment. Our appliances are energy star rated so preserving the environment is just as important as eating healthy," said new franchisee Paul Hendifar.
Jason Hendifar continued, "Los Angeles is home of the burger. It has been a staple of California since the gold-rush, so consumers here have been eating burgers for over a hundred years! LA is a very health conscious city; we know LA residents will appreciate a grass fed organic product made of the finest ingredients."
Elevation Burger was recently featured on CNBC's special report "People, Planet, and Profit" with reporting by CNBC's Bertha Coombs. AOL Small Business named the burger chain one of the most innovative in the country and Fast Casual Magazine ranked it as the Top 100 Movers & Shakers for 2009. Elevation Burger has received consumer awards in prestigious publications such as Washingtonian magazine and The Washington Post as "best shake" and "best burger" nominees, and the concept was a semi-finalist in Washingtonian's heated "2009 Best Burger Bracket." Founder Hans Hess received the "Green Business Visionary" award in 2008 from the Washington Business Journal, and the 2009 Green Business Award from Washingtonian Magazine in May of 2009.
"Ingredients Matter" is not just Elevation Burger's slogan, but also a reflection of the company's constant focus on offering quality food that makes a difference both to the consumer and the environment. Elevation Burger serves only 100 percent USDA-certified organic, 100 percent grass-fed, 100 percent free-range beef burgers freshly ground on-premises and fresh-cut French fries cooked in heart-healthy 100 percent olive oil. Their tasty burgers are made with fresh and never frozen patties. Founded by husband and wife entrepreneurs Hans and April Hess in 2005, the chain prides itself on an "elevated" experience and an organic/fresh approach that puts people and product ahead of profit. The first location opened in 2005, offering Northern Virginia a heart-friendly menu full of flavor. Driven by their passion for delicious food that's organic, sustainable and fresh, Elevation Burger began franchising in 2008. Restaurants feature high-efficiency equipment as well as recycled, recyclable and rapidly renewable finishes, and the company even aims to certify newly constructed stores under the US Green Building Council's LEED rating system – a rarity in the restaurant industry. Restaurants are 1,800-2,500 square feet and seat 50 to 150 guests with outdoor seating.