Top 10 Quick Service Restaurant Franchises in the UK

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quick service restaurant

We all enjoy eating out from time to time. There are some of our favourite dishes that we just can’t seem to replicate ourselves at home. Quick service restaurants are particularly popular as they offer affordable food as quickly and efficiently as possible. If you’re a budding entrepreneur set to capitalise on the high demand and start your own quick service restaurant franchise, you can see our top opportunities below.


Food with friends with no washing up is the perfect evening for many Brits. Consumer spending in restaurants and cafes came close to £88 billion in 2017, with households splashing out an average of £19 a week .The quick service restaurant (QSR) sector is a considerable contributor to this spending, with around 44 percent of consumers visiting a QSR at least once a week.

Be aware that it takes a specific set of skills and a lot of hard work to be a successful quick service restaurant franchise owner. For your restaurant to run effectively, you'll need a team of employees who share your vision for the business. To make this happen, you'll have to demonstrate excellent communication skills, be good at problem-solving and have the ability to inspire those around you. Also, remember that, particularly in the first couple of years, your restaurant will take up most of your time and effort. You need to be sure you’re ready to make this sacrifice. If you are… read on!


Reasons why starting a quick service restaurant franchise is a great idea

1.) Strong industry

The UK QSR market is growing despite the challenging economic conditions. This may be due to people choosing to eat quick, inexpensive food rather than dining out in a more traditional restaurant setting.

2.) Can adapt to customer demand

QSRs are changing to accommodate customer demand and trends. Rather than just focusing on burgers and fried chicken, most chains are updating their menus to include healthier options too. The ability of QSR brands to innovate and adapt ensures that they will remain a firm favourite with customers.

3.) Rapid expansion

A large number of QSRs operate using the franchise model. This is because the franchise model lends itself perfectly to rapid expansion over large areas. The expense of setting up each restaurant is also shared between franchisee and franchisor, making it a cost-effective way to grow.

Top quick service restaurant franchises

Some of the world’s most recognised restaurant brands are QSRs that operate using the franchise model. Global QSR brands including McDonald’s, Burger King, Subway, KFC, Domino’s and Pizza Hut are all franchises. In recent years, there has also been an increase in lesser-known QSR brands offering a range of different cuisines and an affordable alternative to fries and pizzas.

We’ll now consider our top QSR franchise picks in the UK.

1. Wok&Go

Established in Chester in 2008, this Asian food franchise offers noodle and rice dishes, along with salads, soups and Asian ice creams. Wok&Go blends food traditions from Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, China and Japan to bring the very best healthy and speedy dishes to its customers.
.

  • Becoming a Wok&Go franchisee: The brand has high hopes for expansion and is particularly looking for qualified individual and corporate franchisees interested in opening up in the South of England, London and Manchester. You can learn more and register your interest here.
     
  • How much you need to invest: Interested franchisees should make a total investment of £200,000 and pay franchise fees of £20,000.
     
  • What you get for your investment: You will receive help in the recruitment and staff training processes and be allocated a dedicated area manager, who will visit the franchise twice a month.

2. WOLF

Wolf’s business model caters to the demand for affordable food that can be prepared quickly and eaten on the go. Wolf has been in operation since 2015 and offers healthy Italian street food made from locally sourced ingredients.

  • Becoming a Wolf franchisee: Find out more and get the process started here.

  • How much you need to invest: Investors can choose to be a standard franchisee or a master franchisee, but a total investment of £200,000 is required to launch a Wolf outlet.
     
  • What you get for your investment: Strong branding, an intensive four-week training programme, ongoing store support and a marketing plan uniquely developed for the franchise’s specific territory will equip franchisees with all the necessary tools to flourish in this competitive industry.

In demand 44 percent of consumers visit a QSR at least once a week.

3. SUBWAY

Subway is a very well-known brand in the UK, but you might not have realised that there are more than 43,000 stores in over 110 countries! This is a huge global business, and it’s looking to expand even more with the help of franchise partners.

  • Becoming a Subway franchisee: Subway is looking for savvy entrepreneurs with a passion for the brand. You also need to abide by its procedures and follow the training and site selection processes. Click here to get started.
     
  • How much you need to invest: In order to be accepted as a franchisee, interested entrepreneurs will need to make a minimum investment of £85,570.
     
  • What you get for your investment: In order for you to be able to run your own Subway franchise confidently, the brand provides a two-week training course that is carried out in one of its many training centres across the globe

4. Papa Johns

As a leading pizza delivery chain, Papa John’s offers thick crust pizza, dough-based snacks, drinks and desserts. Founded in the US in the 1980s, Papa John’s expanded into the UK in 2000 and now has more than 5,000 branches across 45 countries worldwide, achieving an annual revenue that exceeds $3 billion.

  • Becoming a Papa John’s franchisee: Investors looking for a slice of the action do not need previous experience with a food franchise as long as they are business-oriented and have good communication skills. Click here to learn more and sign up.
     
  • How much you need to invest: A minimum investment of £100,000 and £18,500 in franchise fees will be required to get a Papa John’s store up and running.
     
  • What you get for your investment: New franchisees will benefit from a six-week training scheme that includes marketing support, as well as a royalty reduction programme and free oven.

5. Fireaway

Fireaway puts the fast in fast food. This pizza franchise offers its customers authentic, Italian, stone-fired pizza in just three minutes.

  • Becoming a Fireaway franchisee: To learn more and get the ball rolling, just click here.

  • How much you need to invest: To become a Fireaway franchisee, you need to make a minimum investment of £30,000 and a total investment of £49,000. The expected revenue after two years is an impressive £500,000.
     
  • What you get for your investment: Fireaway will take care of marketing and supply the most talented chefs from Italy to make sure that the brand’s high standards are maintained across every franchise location.

6. NKD Pizza

This Italian food and drink franchise serves up healthy and tasty pizzas made from its signature 10-grain dough. It first launched in the UK in 2015, when US restaurants were relocated to London, Edinburgh and Dubai.

  • Becoming a NKD Pizza franchisee: If you want to get a slice of the action with this pizza delivery franchise, click here to register your interest.
     
  • How much you need to invest: You’ll need to have access to a minimum investment of £180,000 to be accepted onto the franchise programme. After two years, you can expect to make a revenue of up to £750,000.
     
  • What you get for your investment: You will receive full training, 24/7 support and state-of-the-art marketing tools. You’ll also benefit from a fully managed, mobile-optimised website, online ordering platform and social media page.

7. Marugame Udon

This Japanese food franchise’s primary offering is its fresh udon, which are made on-site. The efficient service means that orders can be dished up in as little as 30 seconds.

  • Becoming a Marugame Udon franchisee: The Japanese restaurant franchise is looking for area development franchisees who are prepared to open at least five locations. To learn more and register your interest, click here.
     
  • How much you need to invest: In order to become a Marugame franchisee, you need to make a minimum investment of £250,000 and a total investment of £500,000.
     
  • What you get for your investment: You’ll be designated your own exclusive territory and granted access to the comprehensive training programme.

8. Wok To Walk

You’ve probably seen Wok To Walk’s black and orange logo on the high street somewhere. Ever wondered if you could own your own? There are over 85 Wok To Walk stores giving customers their Asian food fix and taking the food service industry by storm.

  • Becoming a Wok To Walk franchisee: The franchise opportunity is flexible. You can open a flagship store or a hole-in-the-wall spot - it’s up to you! It’s the versatile business model that attracts all types of customers. Wok To Walk is looking for entrepreneurs who share its ambitious expansion plans. Click here to learn more and sign up.
     
  • How much you need to invest: Restaurant start-up costs can vary, but you’re looking at around £100,000 for the minimum investment cost.
     
  • What you get for your investment: As well as a globally recognised brand name, you will benefit from a tried and tested training programme. The HQ team works with franchisees and provides bespoke consultancy services and support.

9. Dunkin’ Donuts

There are over 11,000 Dunkin’ Donuts locations spread across 31 countries, serving more than five million customers every single day. In fact, the franchise sells an average of over 30 cups of coffee every second. It’s also accumulated almost 70 years of experience in the food and drink industry, and is famous among coffee – and doughnut – lovers worldwide.

  • Becoming a Dunkin’ Donuts franchisee: This doughnut franchise is looking for entrepreneurs who are prepared to open at least 20 outlets within a given period. If you think you’re the person for the job, why not get in touch? To learn more and sign up, click here.

  • How much you need to invest: This is a big brand, so you’ll need to have at least £3 million to invest.
     
  • What you get for your investment: It goes without saying that you’ll benefit from high brand recognition and a ready-made customer base. It’s likely that, wherever you set up shop, you’ll find plenty of hungry customers eager to dunk their doughnuts.

10. Baskin Robbins

Founded in 1945 by Burt Baskin and Irv Robbins, this business has over 7,300 stores across almost 50 countries. Baskin Robbins serves milkshakes, smoothies and fruit creams alongside a huge selection of ice creams.

  • Becoming a Baskin Robbins franchisee: When you join this franchise, you’ll be able to tempt customers with Baskin Robbins’ sundaes. Those with a sweet tooth are often excited to choose their own ice cream and add toppings such as hot fudge, marshmallows, roasted almonds, chocolate truffles or fruit. To learn more and sign up, click here.
     
  • How much you need to invest: Franchisees looking for a piece of the action should be willing to make a total investment of £500,000.
     
  • What you get for your investment: Investors will get help finding suitable site locations, as well as guidance in operational support, management systems, food safety and health and safety. What’s more, quarterly franchisee meetings provide an opportunity to network with and learn from other franchisees on a regular basis.

Start a quick service restaurant franchise

If you like the look of any of the above QSR restaurants, click on their client pages to find out more. We have a whole article series dedicated to the top franchises in each sector. If you’ve got a taste for something food-related, check out:

 

 

>> Read more articles on the Restaurant sector

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