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A&W named one of 17 best franchising deals by QSR Magazine

LEXINGTON, Ky.A&W Restaurants, the 500-plus unit classic American restaurant franchise, has been recognized by QSR Magazine as one of the country’s Top 17 deals in restaurant franchising. QSR cites the brand’s franchise board, accommodations for franchisees and a collaborative marketing team in its September rankings.

“We’ve been able to maintain the values QSR highlighted through a long-standing model, and it’s all thanks to a group of business owners that believe in our setup and believe in the ongoing values of the A&W brand,” said Kevin Bazner, A&W’s CEO.

Kevin Bazner is CEO of A&W Restaurants, headquartered in Lexington.

A&W’s headquarters is located on the University of Kentucky Coldstream Research Campus in Lexington.

QSR’s ranking points out that A&W is 100% owned by franchisees, and a board of franchisees oversee operations and corporate decision-making. This has shown consumers and prospective owners that A&W has no intentions to sell its brand to a larger entity.

John Palumbo, A&W’s senior director of franchise development, said the brand’s franchisee board has helped create cohesiveness within the A&W system that is often unrivaled in the franchising space.

“Any business can say that they listen to the needs of franchise owners, but we truly make a space for their voices to be heard,” he said. QSR adds that A&W thrived during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Comp sales, which increased for the ninth straight year in 2020, are up more than 50% at the midway point of 2021.”

An A&W franchise investment includes equipment, a franchising fee, training, opening costs, inventory and three months of additional funding.

After more than 100 years in business, the brand continues to expand. A&W has shown continued growth in 2021 with 14 new restaurant commitments. This has been made possible through an adaptive business model, something the brand saw plenty of benefits from in 2020: A&W experienced a 14% increase in average unit volume last year at standalone drive-thru locations and has continued to develop those units in wake of a changing consumer landscape.

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