The emerging breakfast, brunch and lunch franchise is riding the wave of an explosively successful 2019 thanks to a proven concept, dedicated franchisees and a targeted growth model.
As competition within the breakfast segment heats up, Eggs Up Grill has set itself apart in the crowded segment thanks to its community-centric culture, magnetic guest appeal, compelling economics and strategic growth throughout the Southeastern U.S.
Since 1997, Eggs Up Grill has become a place where neighbors can serve up smiles from sunup through lunch. Fueled by WJ Partners’ majority stake acquisition in 2018, the tasty breakfast, brunch and lunch concept has experienced rapid expansion this past year and now includes 38 locations—37 of which are franchised, and one is company-owned in Spartanburg, South Carolina.
The momentum isn’t slowing down anytime soon. Multi-unit deals in Wilmington, North Carolina, Ocala, Florida, South Carolina, North Georgia and Savannah, Georgia are propelling the brand’s growth, as are more single restaurant signings in Tampa, Florida, Ft. Mill, South Carolina, and Gastonia, North Carolina. The brand’s blazing expansion and franchise development this past year hasn’t gone unnoticed: Eggs Up Grill was recently recognized on FSR Magazine’s List of Emerging Breakfast Chains and also landed a spot on Franchise Times’ Top 200+ List for 2019.
The brand has 38 locations in operations with an additional 30 restaurant commitments in the pipeline. In 2020, 15 to 20 restaurants will open, with five of those locations to be in operation by early February.
“Our brand does an incredibly good job on the critical basics of any restaurant: You need great tasting food, consistency of execution and clean restaurants—and the secret sauce at Eggs Up Grill is the quality of team members and franchise partners,” said CEO Ricky Richardson. “Now that we have that in place, Eggs Up Grill is primed for steady, continuous growth throughout the Southeast and beyond as we continue to partner with quality franchisees.”
The breakfast, brunch and lunch brand offers its franchisees several benefits including a simple business model, strong unit-level economics, a track record of success, fantastic guest reviews, an experienced leadership team and support system and family-friendly hours of operation—6am–2pm, which provide franchisees with an advantageous work/life balance.
“The work life balance is very good for us,” said Judy McClure, franchise owner alongside her husband with locations in Alpharetta, Georgia and Roswell, Georgia. “I almost wish we’d done it earlier. It has been very conducive to a family raising small children.”
Many Eggs Up Grill franchisees came to the brand as former guests who loved the experience, product and community feel of the restaurants. In fact, 67% of Eggs Up Grill franchisees were loyal fans of the brand before owning their own Eggs Up Grill restaurant and many joined without prior restaurant experience. That devoted guest experience translates to a brand driven by—and growing as a direct result of—its loyal fanbase and franchise partners.
“We’re building our organization by being effective franchisors,” said VP Franchise Development Director, Todd Owen. “It is about making sure that we’re clear on who we are—we have a robust franchise selection, and our training program, marketing and field support provides the tools that our franchisees need to be successful. We listen to our franchise partners because they’re closest to the guest.”
To position their franchise partners for continued success in 2020, the brand spent the last year investing heavily in technology, training and support; the company’s Training Center and Innovation Kitchen opened in July in Spartanburg. Additionally, the brand is growing revenue through menu innovation, expanding its catering program and rolling out online ordering in early 2020 to support the increasing demand for delivery.
“We are actively working to continue to grow our top-line sales by providing exceptional experiences to guests, innovative, new product development and appealing promotions that expand our revenue both inside and outside our four walls,” said Richardson. “From a business standpoint, Eggs Up Grill offers strong unit-level economics and a track record of success.”
With plans to open 15 to 20 restaurants in 2020, Eggs Up Grill is well on its way of reaching its overall goal of 100-locations by mid-2022. The past year positioned the brand to rapidly grow in more communities across the U.S and double the number of states the brand is present in.
“We see incredibly happy guests, new guests coming into the system and a wave of new franchise partners steadily coming on board,” said Richardson. “This really speaks to the stability of our 20-plus-year-old brand and the strength of the core business. Of the 18 locations we currently have in development for 2020, about 40% are from existing franchisees who are adding to their portfolio. Now that is a business with real longevity.”
Right now is one of the most exciting moments in Eggs Up Grill’s 23-year history, and with big plans in place, the forecast is looking sunny.
About Eggs Up Grill:
Eggs Up Grill is home to the whole neighborhood, serving smiles from sunup through lunch. The aromas of freshly brewed coffee, savory bacon and hand-cracked, farm-fresh eggs on the griddle, and warm, attentive team members will make you feel right at home. We are “neighbors serving neighbors” daily from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Recently ranked as the no. 1 breakfast franchise by Entrepreneur magazine’s Franchise 500® for its outstanding performance in areas including unit growth, financial strength and stability, and brand power, Eggs Up Grill is experiencing record growth across the Southeast. Originally founded in Pawleys Island, S.C., by restaurateur Chris Skodras, Eggs Up Grill now has 47 locations and is headquartered in Spartanburg, S.C. In 2018, private equity firm WJ Partners acquired Eggs Up Grill, building the team and priming the brand to rapidly grow in more communities across the U.S. with plans underway to reach the 100 restaurant mark by 2023. For more information, visit eggsupgrill.com. To learn more about franchising with Eggs Up Grill, visit https://www.eggsupgrill.com/franchise/.