Fast-casual concept Five Guys Enterprises has grown 792% since 2006, making it fastest-growing restaurant chain in U.S.; company has 1,039 outlets in Canada, U.S.

Nevin Barich

Nevin Barich

Jul 20, 2012 – Industry Intelligence Inc.

LOS ANGELES , July 19, 2012 () – Five Guys Enterprises LLC, more commonly known as Five Guys Burgers and Fries, has doubled in size since 2009 and is the fastest-growing domestic restaurant chain, Forbes reported July 18.

The chain has grown by 792% since 2006, making it the fastest-growing restaurant chain in the U.S., Technomic Inc. said. Currently, it has 1,039 outlets in Canada and the U.S., with another 1,500 locations that are committed for construction waiting in the wings. In comparison, Jimmy John’s, the second-fastest growing restaurant chain in the U.S., grew 241% to 1,329 locations during this same period, the food industry research group added.

The company, which has sold all of its North American franchise rights, will likely generate revenues of more than US$1 billion in 2012, up from $950 million the previous year. During this period, corporate revenues will likely amount to approximately $275 million, including a cash flow of $50 million, Forbes noted.

The chain, which consists of 839 franchised locations and 200 company-owned stores, has an estimated value of $500 million. It is privately owned, with the seven members of the founding Murrell family (founder Jerry Murrell; his wife Jane Murrell; and Jerry’s sons Jim, Matt, Chad, Ben and Tyler) holding equal stakes that amount to 75% combined. Philadelphia-based investment firm Miller Investment Management L.P. owns 20% of the chain, and a few of Murrell’s school friends own the remaining 5%.

The $2.2 billion “better burger” segment grew 16% in 2011, surpassing the entire $40 billion burger category’s 3.2% growth rate. Five Guys alone represents nearly half of the “better” burger segment, which also includes chains such as Smashburger, In-N-Out Burger, Fuddruckers and Shake Shack, according to Forbes’ report.

Murrell and his oldest three sons founded the first Five Guys restaurant in Arlington, Virginia, in 1986 for just under $70,000, Forbes said.

The primary source of this article is Forbes, New York, New York, on July 18, 2012.

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