The Cheesecake Factory is a big name in the US fast food restaurant scene; it has a vast menu and an even bigger customer base – but does The Cheesecake Factory franchise?
As you might expect, The Cheesecake Factory specialises in cheesecake, but it’s not just a ‘dessert restaurant’. It also has a huge range of mains, appetisers and sides, as well as a variety of different sweets. While the business is primarily based in the US, its network of 194 branded restaurants are spread across the world in a number of international markets.
The Cheesecake Factory also owns two other brands; the Grand Lux Café and the RockSugar Pan Asian Kitchen. And it also sells its desserts to other businesses, such as Barnes & Noble bookstore cafes. Here, we take a look at whether The Cheesecake Factory offers franchising opportunities and whether it has plans for expansion in the UK.
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History of The Cheesecake Factory
The Cheesecake Factory was established in 1972 as a wholesale bakery that provided local restaurants with cheesecakes and other desserts. Over the following six years, it grew in size and eventually expanded by opening a small sandwich restaurant in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles.
From its humble beginnings, The Cheesecake Factory boomed, opening two further locations in Marina del Rey and Redondo Beach, before looking even further afield. Restaurants soon followed in Washington DC and Florida.
As The Cheesecake Factory brand developed, the opportunity to expand internationally arose and the business leapt at the chance. Its first location outside of the US market was in the UAE at the Dubai Mall in 2012. Today, The Cheesecake Factory is an international food service business with restaurants in Canada, Latin America, the Middle East and Asia.
Does The Cheesecake Factory franchise?
Yes, but all of the brand’s restaurants in the US and Canada are owned and operated by the company itself. This means that there are no franchising opportunities in either of these two markets, where the brand is most popular.
However, international expansion has been carried out through corporate ownership and franchise licensing arrangements. As a result, there are international franchising agreements available, if you’re interested in running your own business with The Cheesecake Factory.
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The food market in the UK
Historically, US imports have performed particularly well in the UK, but The Cheesecake Factory may have the ideal opportunity to expand into this market. The UK appears to be perfectly prepared for the introduction of new dessert restaurants. In fact, The Cheesecake Factory may be onto a winner, as 42 percent of Brits would apparently opt for cheesecake over other desserts, according to a poll by Lyle’s Golden Syrup.
What’s more, 54 percent valued a wide variety of dessert options and the chance to try “innovative” new desserts when eating in a restaurant. This is great news for those who are interested in opening their own The Cheesecake Factory in the UK, with the brand’s extensive dessert menu and exclusive, unique cheesecakes, such as the Pineapple Upside-Down Cheesecake and the Pumpkin Cheesecake.
The stats suggest that starting a business with The Cheesecake Factory in the UK could be a fantastic opportunity, so it’s worth checking with the brand to see whether it is offering franchising licences in this market. It’s true that the UK’s fast food landscape has changed considerably over the last few years. However, The Cheesecake Factory should be well placed to build a successful restaurant network here, as long as it listens and responds to consumer demands and industry trends.
How to get involved with The Cheesecake Factory
Let’s go back to The Cheesecake Factory’s international corporate ownership and franchise licensing opportunities. These agreements allow a single company to operate The Cheesecake Factory in that particular territory, much like a master franchising agreement. In other words, you would run a number of restaurants in a dedicated area.
This system has been employed in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Lebanon, and it’s likely it would also be used to facilitate expansion into the UK. This means that UK investors would have the opportunity to bid for the role of the master franchisor or to apply to become an area developer and open individual restaurants on behalf of the master franchisor.
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Similar opportunities with Point Franchise
If you’re not willing to wait for UK franchise opportunities with The Cheesecake Factory, you may want to consider joining an alternative franchise – fortunately, there are plenty of options. And there’s plenty you can learn from the success of The Cheesecake Factory.
For example, The Cheesecake Factory is famous for its enormous range of 34 cheesecakes, but it also has a large array of other dishes. In fact, the size of the menu has become something of a USP, prompting unusual word-of-mouth marketing. The sheer amount of choice has also resulted in various memes and viral jokes making their way around social media, giving the chain a significant amount of exposure in the process. Now, The Cheesecake Factory has a reputation in the US for having the longest menu of any fast food chain in the country.
It’s unlikely you’ll find a franchise with quite as much choice as The Cheesecake Factory offers. But you can prioritise the ones that give their customers a large amount of choice, as this is clearly valued. And there’s little doubt that there’s huge scope to see success with a dessert restaurant in the UK. So what dessert franchises are there?
- Cinnabon – If cheesecake isn’t your thing, why not specialise in cinnamon rolls? Cinnabon offers you the chance to do just this. Using the finest ingredients and the spirit of the traditional local bakery, this franchise sells comforting, frosted buns in a range of different formats and flavours.
- Crepeaffaire – Crepes are another popular sweet treat, not only in the UK, but across the world. With a total investment of £200,000, you’ll be making your own high-quality crepes in under an hour.
- Amorino – This franchise sells authentic Italian ice cream made from natural ingredients. You’ll need to make a total investment of £500,000, and you could be making £425,000 in revenue after two years.
- Baskin Robbins – If you want a successful US import, why not join this established brand? The famous ice cream vendor has a mouthwatering selection of ice creams and sweet treats.
- Shakeaway – This is the world’s largest milkshake bar company and the original re-inventor of the milkshake. It’s been ‘shaking’ since 1999 and it’s now a unique global company with stores popping up all over the world.
- The Avocado Show – If you want to be part of the number one restaurant and lifestyle brand in avocados, get in touch with The Avocado Show. You’ll need a £200,000 minimum investment.
Join the dessert restaurant sector
This is a fantastic sector to get involved in. Opening a restaurant can be tough, but with a great business model, determination and passion for your brand, you should be able to become a profitable franchisee in this sector. To discover our portfolio of dessert franchises, click here.
Alice Tuffery, Point Franchise ©