Fast food franchising

Minority Matters
Major Issues in Minority Franchising

Viva Utah!

Taco Del Mar, a Seattle-based food franchise that bills itself as the "Mexican version of Subway," announced a five-year, 50 restaurant expansion plan in Utah. The company, which serves customers healthier versions of tacos, enchiladas and burritos, was attracted to Utah for its dedication to promoting a healthy, active lifestyle and for its growing Hispanic population. "What impressed us about Utah was the fairly high (and ever increasing) Hispanic population there as well as the strong interest in fresh Mexican food concepts," said Taco Del Mar's Bill Wright. "There are lots of Taco Time, Taco Bell and Del Taco restaurants, but there are also a lot of successful local restaurants like Cafe Rio." Wright, a former Subway franchisee who was hired to develop the Utah market, will join other Taco Del Mar representatives to tour prospective real estate in Utah before making any final decisions regarding the location of their new restaurants.

Crowning the New King

When AmeriKing, one of the largest Burger King restaurant franchisees, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, Miami-based Core Value Partners was right there to "pick up the pieces" and the franchise locations. Core Value Partners, a private equity group that is backing the Heartland Foods Corp., recently won bankruptcy court approval to acquire 127 Midwestern Burger King outlets. The buy was of particular interest to Core Value Partners because of the primarily Hispanic and African-American markets in which the restaurants are located. The operating partner of Core Value Partners is Al Cabrera, an experienced Burger King franchisee and president of the Hispanic Franchisee Association. Cabrera and the other Core Value Partners profess to have extensive experience in marketing to minority customer bases. Heartland Food and Core Value Partners are now the largest minority owners of franchises in the Burger King system.

Coverall Cleans Up!

Coverall Cleaning Concepts, recognized by Black Enterprise Magazine as one of the top home-based businesses for African-American franchisees, has made its way to the top of more than a couple of high-profile lists. The commercial cleaning company announced it has been included in Entrepreneur's 24th Annual Franchise 500. The 17 year old company has also worked its way onto the lists of the top 10 Fastest-Growing Franchises, the top 20 Low-Investment Franchises and one of the top 100 Franchises overall. Coverall Cleaning is also elbow-to-elbow with companies like Burger King and H&R Block on the Franchise Times list of the largest franchise chains.

"Low cost, comprehensive training and guaranteed customers have attributed to our dramatic growth over the past year," said Ted Elliott, President and COO of Coverall. "We strive to make our franchise owners successful and in turn our loyalty has made the Coverall Cleaning Concepts franchise prosper."

The company has worked hard to achieve its recognized success. Since 2000 the company has seen a 25 percent jump in the number of franchisees in its system. Its customer accounts have also climbed a healthy 17 percent and 7,500 franchisees now serve more than 37,000 clients. Coverall's franchisees provide 24/7 routine, specialized and premium cleaning services including hard floor care, carpet cleaning, window and blind cleaning, sanitation, ceiling and wall cleaning and fire and flood restoration.

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