American Burger Chain Franchises in the UK

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burger chain franchises

The UK can thank the US for many of its trends, and this includes our love of burgers. Although it is thought to have originated in Hamburg in the 1800s (hence the name hamburger), beef patties have been served up between a bread bun in America since the early 1900s. It is now considered to be one of Americas classic dishes and is eaten an average of three times a week there. As a result, almost 50 billion burgers are sold every year in the US, contributing $73 billion (£55 billion) to the economy.

Brits have welcomed the burger with open arms, and burger restaurants and fast-food stores can be found up and down the UK high street. Although the UK burger market is much smaller, worth £3.3 billion, burgers are a popular choice both in casual dining restaurants and as a fast-food snack for those on-the-go.

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Famous American Burger Chains

Many of the most well-known burger chains in the UK have the US to thank for their formation. American burger brands like McDonalds and Burger King have seen huge success in the UK, but the US has many more brands that are visited every day by Americans up and down the country. These include Wendys, Five Guys and In-N-Out. In fact, there are more than 50,000 burger restaurants across the US. Many chains offer fast food, but there is also a range of mid-range burger restaurants that provide a casual dining experience, as well as more high-end options with more expensive dishes. With consumers increasingly interested in the origin of their food, many restaurants are providing customers with the reassurance that their meat is sustainably and ethically sourced.

American Fast Food Burger Chains

Fast food has long been associated with the US, providing quick and cheap food options to those on the lookout for a convenient meal or snack. The popularity of fast food in the US is clear to see, with the fast food industry worth almost $200 billion (£150 billion).

McDonalds is widely considered to be the most successful fast food brand in the US and the world by most methods of calculation. With a brand value that now far exceeds $100 billion (£75 billion), McDonalds has branches all over the world, more than 90 percent of which are managed by franchisees.

Burger King also has an extensive franchise network, with 15,500 franchised stores and just 71 company-owned stores. Now a household name, Burger King serves 54 million US customers every single month.

Wendys is another fast food franchise that was launched in 1969. Today, the brand has over 6,500 quick service branches across 30 countries worldwide. This is a hugely popular business, which sees almost 50 million customers step through its doors every month.

American Burger Chains UK

Burgers are a staple of the fast food industry, and while there has been a move towards healthier and more environmentally friendly foods in recent years, it is unlikely that the demand for burgers will significantly decrease in the years to come, particularly if burger chains focus on offering a range of dishes for those with dietary requirements and/or an interest in animal welfare and the sustainability of their meat. If burger chains and franchises work to ensure that they are catering for a range of different consumers, they are likely to continue to see success in the burger and fast food industry for years to come.

The burger industry, therefore, represents a great opportunity for budding entrepreneurs to get a business with a guaranteed customer base off the ground. Here are a couple of franchises on the Point Franchise books that offer good investment prospects.


This classic, American burger franchise has been around since 1934, serving burgers, salads, toasties, breakfast dishes, milkshakes and desserts. The UK was introduced to the brand when it crossed the Atlantic in 1954. The burger business continued to see success on foreign ground and established itself as a global brand in 1970. Wimpy is keen to be as inclusive as possible in its food offering and, in 1985, became the first burger chain to offer meat-free burgers. To this day, there are many vegetarian and gluten-free food items on its menu.

While the burger industry is full of franchising opportunities particularly with US brands Wimpy represents an attractive deal for potential investors. Those who are interested in becoming franchisees can opt to open a standard-size unit, with seating for 60 customers and 1,200+ square feet of space, or launch an express unit of just 500+ square feet with £80,000. Investors should ensure that they possess good business judgement and ideally have experience leading others. Having made an investment, all new recruits will undergo a two-week training scheme, equipping them with the tools to excel under the Wimpy name.

One Delivery

Another alternative for investors looking to get involved in a food franchise is to collaborate with One Delivery. This franchise delivers classic dishes from famous fast food and restaurant brands like McDonalds, Burger King and KFC to consumers across the UK. One Delivery claims that the average person spends more than £110 on takeaways every month, which makes its business model extremely profitable, handling more than £1 million worth of orders a month.

Launched in 2013, One Delivery now operates in 65 major UK cities and has 100 franchised units. Franchisees can benefit from joining the delivery franchise by making a minimum investment of just £495 and potentially making a £50,000 turnover after just two years. One Delivery investors will be fully equipped to start the franchise after being enrolled onto a comprehensive induction scheme and take part in training. All franchisees will also be allocated their own franchise manager, who will ensure that the franchising journey runs as smoothly as possible.

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