What FRANdata Thinks

Spotlight on Arby’s: Who are the Faceless Franchisees?

March 31st, 2021 by Ritwik Donde

Franchisees are the faceless owners and power behind franchise brands. Traditionally, this has been important because consumers don’t care who owns the business. They just care about product consistency and the brand experience.

So why is this important? As investors, knowing more about franchisees is crucial because:

  • You may be interested in identifying franchisee acquisition targets, or
  • When evaluating a franchisor, you need insight on franchisee owners just as much as the brand and their consumer.

How we can help

Understanding the number of franchisees that comprise a franchise system, each operator’s size and the extent of their franchise holdings is more challenging than one might expect. There are many hurdles to accurately profiling a franchise system’s franchisees. We approach this problem from an investigator’s perspective using our experience and knowledge base to put small pieces of the puzzle together and creating a full picture for our clients.


Arby’s franchisees that own 10 or more restaurants control close to 70% of the entire Arby’s franchise systems.

Arby's % of Franchised Units Owned by Size of Franchisee

A few stats:

  • 50% of Arby’s franchise owners own a second brand.
  • In fact, these franchisees own a total of 27 franchise brands controlling over 3500 restaurants.

What does FRANdata know about Arby’s franchisees?

Our investigations into the Arby’s system found that some of its franchisees are family owned or second generation franchisees, others have been acquired by private equity. The brand has franchised locations owned by its former Arby’s executives, former executives with other food franchisors or those who previously worked for another franchisee.

Why come to FRANdata for such franchisee information needs?

  • We can identify the scope of operations for large multi-branded franchisees. For example, Quality Restaurant Group (QRG) – the franchisee company is owned by GenRock Capital Management. owns Pizza Hut, Moe’s Southwest Grill & Sonic Drive-In businesses. The company has incorporated its franchised business across five different incorporated entities, none of which can be directly linked to QRG without the help from our investigative research practices.
  • We can untangle the complex organizational structures. For example,  MarLu Investment Group which runs 100+ franchised locations, operates Arby’s locations under 4 different incorporated entities. The company has an overall portfolio spread across more than 10 incorporated entities, making it difficult to understand the true nature of our their scope of operations without our expert guidance.

Click here to learn more about our due diligence solutions and reach out to me to start the conversation: rdonde@frandata.com.

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