12 of the Most Successful Emerging Restaurant Chains
You can measure the financial health of a restaurant in a lot of different ways. Average unit volume is one of those figures that investors and franchisees (especially) gravitate toward because it’s difficult to cloud. It’s simple enough—divide the total company-operated sales by the total company-operated units and you have a pulse of your restaurant’s performance. AUV is a result of traffic and ticket, two essential vital points. Given that, it allows growing brands to understand how new units are performing. For example, if your AUV growth is greater than your same-store sale growth, you (most likely) can deduce that new stores are more profitable than existing ones. Of course, it’s far from an end-all statistic and many things can affect it. Same-store sales, often measured at units open at least a year, is probably the best definition of current and future success since it’s expressed as a percentage that indicates the relative amount of revenue increase or decrease and is compared to the prior-year period. It’s a reflection of the total dollar amount of sales. This is best to understand what portion of a restaurant’s current sales revenues are a result of sales growth in existing locations and what portion is accounted for by the opening of new stores. Simply, same-store sales are a great way to see if a restaurant is growing revenue from its current assets.
With that in mind, here are 12 restaurants, ranked by AUV, poised for big things in 2018 and beyond. Pictured is Cameron Mitchell's Ocean Prime.
Note: Sources for the data include company reports, SEC filings, and industry research. Numbers with an asterisk* are taken from the most recent annual report or SEC filing. Estimates (e) are associated with privately held companies that don’t release sales figures and are compiled from industry research.