Checkers & Rally's, an iconic and innovative drive-thru restaurant chain known for bold and flavorful food at an exceptional value and its people-first attitude, announced its strong momentum in the first half of 2022, with 32 signed franchise & multi-unit development agreements representing a total of 53 new restaurant locations, to date this year. The company has also been announced as the recipient of three industry accolades from The International Foodservice Manufacturers Association (IFMA), Franchise Update Media and Franchise Business Review. The news proceeds the company announcing its record year-end progress for 2021 and accelerated growth plans for 2022 as it continues to reach new markets and expand nationwide.
The new development agreements encompass locations with new and existing franchise groups that will expand the brand in identified priority markets including Phoenix, California and the tri-state area, and enter into new markets including Knoxville, Tenn., Providence, R.I. and Montgomery, Ala. With a healthy new restaurant pipeline, the Company has opened 11 locations so far in 2022, with upwards of another 40 expected to open by year's end in key markets across the country.
In addition, Checkers & Rally's is proud to announce its President & CEO, Frances Allen, has been awarded the prestigious Silver Plate Award by IFMA in the 'Chain Limited Service' category. The award recognizes operators for outstanding leadership and innovation and their contributions to the advancement of the foodservice industry.
"It is such an honor to have been nominated alongside a number of my incredible peers for this year's Silver Plate Award," said Allen. "In my decades of service in the restaurant industry, this is a pinnacle moment in my career, and I am so thankful to all of my team members for their unwavering support and dedication as Checkers & Rally's continues to be recognized as a leader in the quick-service industry. I'd also like to extend a thank you to the team at Coca-Cola for the nomination and greatly appreciate their continued partnership."
The company has continued its award momentum with the announcement that franchisee Bruce Keehn, with his daughter and partner Staci Force, has been named the winner of Franchise Business Review's Franchise Rock Stars award in the 'Family-owned' category. The award recognizes franchisees who are an exceptional example of achieving success within their franchise model. Checkers & Rally's has also been named a winner of this year's Innovation Awards by Franchise Update Media, which recognizes franchise brands that are successfully innovating, building market share and engaging employees and customers. This is the third year in a row that Checkers & Rally's has received an Innovation Award for its accomplishments in operations and technology.
"We are so proud of Bruce, Staci and their entire organization. They serve as tremendous role models for our brand and the entire industry," said Allen. "We also congratulate Checkers & Rally's Operations and IT teams. Their commitment to innovation and guest service has enabled our restaurants to implement successful AI at the drive-thru technology, our new Restaurant of the Future design, our new kitchen engine, and our eCommerce-only drive-thru lanes that have significantly benefited our company-owned and franchised restaurants across our system."
Checkers & Rally's has also created a big splash this year tied to its recent campaign surrounding National French Fry Day. The brand was successful in its petition encouraging the National Day Calendar to move National Fry Day from July 13 on any given year to always land on an actual Friday (the second Friday of July starting in 2023). The campaign led to a groundswell of support among both consumers and media, garnering more than 750 media placements nationwide.
Finally, Checkers & Rally's small real estate footprint, double drive-thru, and advanced delivery-focused concept has seen increased success as consumer preference continues to shift in favor of takeout and delivery options, strengthening its franchising value proposition as it fuels growth for both new and existing franchisees.
"We are eager and excited about the momentum we've had in the first and second quarters and will continue to focus on multi-unit franchising agreements as we look to expand in California, Texas, Massachusetts, Connecticut and North and South Carolina," said Kris McDonald, Vice President of Development at Checkers & Rally's. "We offer franchisees the opportunity to bolster their portfolios with a well-known and innovative brand, and we pride ourselves on the support we provide to ensure successful openings and continued store traffic and sales. It's an honor to have been recognized for our distinguished franchising opportunity, and we congratulate Bruce on his well-deserved recognition."