The Original McFadden’s Restaurant and Saloon was founded in New York City in 1977, the concept was simple, good liquor, solid service and attractive wait staff in an Irish bar/restaurant setting. The formula has seemed to work since the beginning of time and McFadden’s had in a way perfected the model so that virtually any demographic of customer could come to a location and not feel out of place.
McFadden’s brand worked hard over the years to maintain its traditional Irish essence while establishing itself as a respected restaurant. Ultimately, the concept was closely related to a Tilted Kilt or a Twin Peaks type model, but also offered higher quality food and exceptional financials for a bar operation.
Because of the dedication to a solid menu and high-quality food options, the business model was not centred entirely around liquor sales at night and had a more well-rounded revenue stream with food sales and lunch business that other establishments in comparable markets would not generate.
McFadden’s brand had grown through company-owned expansion and with some key operating units in high-profile locations, the brand had achieved significant notoriety and coverage. People from coast to coast knew of McFadden’s brand and many had experienced the venues.
As the company expanded, so too did the operational issues associated with company-owned growth. Even more so in the restaurant and bar business, finding, keeping and maintaining solid staff is one of the most significant obstacles to growth and certainly was a stumbling block for McFadden’s brand.
By 2014, the organization was seeing growth from other brands in the bar and restaurant market and through franchising, they had been able to achieve scale and growth into many more markets. In addition, the high capital cost to open a location of a bar restaurant of this size could easily exceed $2 million in many markets making company-owned growth extremely costly.
McFadden’s turned to Franchise Marketing Systems to help franchise the bar and restaurant business and support the scaled growth of McFadden’s brand into more markets through independent franchise ownership. The bar and restaurant franchise market segment had recently gone through a resurgence and was seeing renewed franchise investor interest in the space.
Particular multi-unit owners were finding the model appealing and McFadden’s was well positioned to capture some of this market share.
Franchise Marketing Systems' team of expert franchise consultants were hired to franchise the business and execute a development model for the brand.
The business model was large, 5,000 – 15,000 square feet in size and was typically located in highly urban, metropolitan markets. The first order of business was to go through a prototype development process and define the model in order to allow the bar and restaurant franchise to open the concept in more suburban market areas where more units could be sold and the concept could scale to larger numbers.
Franchise Marketing Systems worked with McFadden’s operating staff members and documented processes, recommended operating technology, POS Systems and franchise structures that could allow the business model to be taught and trained to franchisees. Franchise operations consultants visited corporate locations and drafted the franchise operations manuals for the bar franchise models.
Due to the large size, there were extensive processes needed to be documented for a large volume of staff. Following the operational and prototype development, the FDD and franchise legal process was handled by an outside franchise attorney qualified in the bar and restaurant franchise market.
Franchise State Registrations were managed in order to promote the brand in key markets where initial interest was already in place. Finally, Franchise Marketing Systems developed the franchise marketing and sales strategies for promoting and selling the bar and restaurant franchise to qualified franchisees.
When the marketing and sales model launched for McFadden’s, the first marketing venue was to exhibit the restaurant franchise at the Multi-Unit Franchise Expo held in Las Vegas. With a well-positioned, professional staff and booth presentation, the show generated in excess of 300 leads and supported an initial launch of McFadden’s franchise.
In the first year of franchise recruitment, 6 new units were sold and the brand was taking shape as a solid franchise contender in the bar and restaurant market. Unit financials continued to exceed industry standards with some units generating in excess of $5 million in annual revenues.
In a two-year time, period, Franchise Marketing Systems was able to support the growth of McFadden’s brand to 17 operating units across the United States.
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