Schlotzsky's has nearly 100 locations in pipeline

Marianne Wilson
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Schlotzsky's is accelerating its growth.

 The fast-casual restaurant brand said it has signed more than 75 deals in 2021 to develop new restaurants in New MexicoArizonaOklahoma and other target markets across the United States. The agreements put Schlotzsky’s on track to sign 100 restaurant deals in 2021.

With 87%  of its business already consumed off-premises, Schlotzsky's, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, recently evolved its prototype design to better serve guests and meet their demands for convenience and off-premises access. The company has launched two prototypes, one with a drive-thru on each side of the restaurant and space for a curbside pick-up window and another with a single drive-thru and seating for 35 guests. 

While drive-thrus have always been a brand hallmark and are currently present in 85% of Schlotzsky's restaurants, the new prototypes provide superior operational efficiencies to enhance speed of service and accuracy for delivery, to-go and catering occasions, the company said. Moving forward, 99% of Schlotzsky's locations will feature a drive-thru.

"Over the past few years, we've recognized the need to evolve our restaurant design and provide flexible options to franchisees to develop in competitive real estate markets and urban areas," says Tory Bartlett, chief brand officer of Schlotzsky's. "Since we launched our new prototypes and placed an added emphasis on accessibility and convenience, we've seen an increase in signed deals and overall franchisee interest.”

With 329 restaurant locations in 24 states and more on the way, Schlotzsky's is in the midst of aggressive expansion through conversions and new construction.