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News: Quiznos, Chipotle, Fuddruckers, Pizza Fushion


  • Quiznos renegotiated it’s debt load and took in an infusion of equity capital from JP Morgan and other existing shareholders.   You can read both good and bad into this.  The good being the investors saw enough upside to invest more, the bad being Quiznos desperately needed this to happen so their financial soundness probably isn’t strong.


  • Chipotle still showing a growing customer base with 1st quarter same-store sales up 4.3%.  They plan to open a new store every three days in 2010.


  • Fuddruckers filed for bankruptcy a few weeks ago.   It received approval to sell 62 Fuddruckers and a dozen Koo Koo Roo (similar to Boston Market) for $65 million.  It also plans to close 20 restaurants with “lease issues or low-foot traffic” stores.  Sales were down 10% in 2009.
  • I woudn’t consider Fuddruckers part of the “better burger” craze of Five Guys and Counter, the brand is simply too old and retail square footage is way too large.  Red Robin’s are large in size too, but it invested plenty of capital in marketing and bradning to keep its brand appealing to the next generation of customers…much more so than Fuddruckers.

Pizza Fusion

  • Plans to offset its entire “carbon footprint” by paying a percentage of sales to a company to construct renewable energy facilities.

About Ryan Knoll

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  1. I’d buy a distressed Quiznos or Fuddruckers. The brand itself is enough to draw in customers. Anyone want to sell for $10,000 or less?

    • Let me assist you …. at no price is owning a Quiznos a solid. Unless you think working 7 days a week for a personal owners salary of $30-40K a year attractive. 1. The corporate structure is dysfunctional (research how many time Rick has been the CEO) 2. The price you pay for food and supplies is roughly double what your competition pays. 3. Your rent will be high. Q has no clout with the rent industry. To many stores closed under long leases. 4. Advertising is just a rumor. All marketing work will fall on you as the owner. 5. In 7 years being associated with Q I have yet to find a single owner who is happy with their decision to own one of their stores. Fuddruckers I know nothing about except having eaten there.

  2. Jack,
    why don’t you just go ahead and donate that 10 grand and save yourself the trouble.

  3. Fuddruckers is a nasty experience. I eat at one in Vienna VA frequently because it is fast and has non-red meat options that are palatable. There is little traffic so I can get in and put quickly with my turkey burger. But it is a rather nasty excuse for a turkey burger.

    I generally stop in there on the way to the airport as I would be embarrassed to take my team their for lunch nor do I think they would show up if invited.

    The chain is tired, there are no standards left. One Fuddruckers is dramatically different than another in terms of the quality of preparation and cleanliness.

    As a franchise it makes no sense because the quality control is so lacking. One location has properly prepared foods and the other is incapable of cooking anything desirable.

    Most of the ones I have been to of late are staffed by Spanish speakers with limited English ability and true supervision is not evident.

    It is too bad too, as Fuddruckers was something at one time and should have been a leader in the better burger charge of late. Instead it has been left behind.

  4. Staying on the pizza topic for a moment…..Little Caesar’s and Donatos (both pizza) have a large number of former company executives that have transitioned to franchisees. That is a good sign and both are adding units faster than their counterparts in the industry, each for different reasons (LC for price, D for uniqueness). […]

  5. I am so shocked that Quiznos continues to get franchisees. I mean the brand is known but it is very infomous around the franchise world. Just check out this website and you’ll see all the lawsuits put against the the sandwich franchise. Bad news!

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