Quaker Steak & Lube Fueling Growth in Nontraditional Locations
Casual dining franchise Quaker Steak & Lube is fueling up for growth with new routes to expand the iconic motorsports-themed brand nationwide.
Quaker Steak & Lube is supercharging franchise development with a fresh focus on building the brand name in prime nontraditional locations. Quaker Steak & Lube, known for award-winning food and a fun family atmosphere, is the perfect fit for stadiums, kiosks, colleges, airports, and other nontraditional locations, notes Bruce Lane, vice president of operations and franchise services.
The brand, backed by mega multi-unit operator TravelCenters of America, knows the value of nontraditional locations for the Quaker Steak & Lube chain. Restaurants operated by franchisees at Pittsburgh International and Cleveland International airports are proven winners.
“Our presence in airports in Pittsburgh and Cleveland has produced significant results and it’s been exciting to adapt our award-winning concept into nontraditional spaces, allowing travelers to experience our brand on the go,” says Lane.
There is a lot to love about expanding the brand in new ways. Lane, who points to Heinz Field and PNC Park as additional examples of successful nontraditional sites, says flexible expansion offers new avenues for growth and a solid franchise investment.
“There has been significant financial success for our existing non-traditional locations,” Lane says. “This is a result of having much higher sales-per-square-foot. There is a better return on investment following the smaller investment price point.”
Lane also mentioned that the smaller footprint buildings allow the brand to have potential presence in less populated areas, as exhibited in their Gary, Indiana location. Quaker Steak & Lube Express, recently introduced in Gary, Indiana, provides a more flexible, build-out with a smaller footprint and lower investment level. The rollout of the walk-up concept coincides with limited-time franchise development incentives available to franchisees who sign to open more than one Quaker Steak & Lube restaurant.
Quaker Steak & Lube’s course for national expansion is poised to hit the fast track with the introduction of the Express model and franchise development incentives for new multi-unit franchisees. New qualified Quaker Steak & Lube franchisees can take advantage of significant offers, including waived development fees and 50 percent off of the initial franchise fee — together a $40,000 value — and reduced royalties for the first three years, including the first year at 2.5 percent — a substantial savings from the standard royalty rate of 5 percent. The royalty rate will increase slightly to 3.5 percent in the second year and 4.5 percent in the third year.
With nearly 50 locations in 14 states, Quaker Steak & Lube is growing its national footprint by expanding into key target markets such as Indianapolis; Columbus, Ohio; Daytona, Ohio; Charlotte, North Carolina; Nashville, Tennessee; Detroit, Michigan; Philadelphia; Lexington, Kentucky; Louisville, Kentucky; and across Florida.
Franchise support includes state-of-the-art site modeling tools to help franchisees understand market hot spots and additional site guidance once the market is selected. Franchise partners can choose from a prototype design or work with the brand for conversion or nontraditional units. The Express model, the latest in a portfolio of building designs that capitalize on both interior and exterior square footage, joins a lineup that includes multiple building designs, with additional opportunities for conversions and nontraditional buildouts.
Lane says the brand is seeking experienced multi-unit operators to carry on the legacy of Quaker Steak & Lube with a new and improved look by bringing the Express concept to a variety of markets across the country.
“This is a one-of-a-kind opportunity and we are thrilled to meet entrepreneurs that are interested in taking advantage of the offer and growing the brand,” Lane says.