What started as a last-minute college project of a student who spent more time surfing than studying is now looking to expand its one-of-a-kind franchise opportunity across the East Coast.
Having recently opened its very first franchise location in Virginia, Outer Banks Boil Company—a North Carolina-based takeout and catering concept that specializes in true low-country Carolinian-style seafood boils—is looking to expand its footprint from Maine to Florida. The brand currently has five total units operating in the Southeast (North Carolina, Maryland and Virginia).
Specifically eyeing beach communities, cities and college/university towns, Outer Banks Boil Company is planning to open at least 3-5 units in 2021 and at least five locations each year thereafter.
“I always knew that I’d prefer board shorts and flip flops over a suit and tie, but I could have never imagined that a senior project would drive me in that direction,” says Outer Banks Boil Company founder Matt Khouri. “To see a class project develop into a successful and rapidly expanding business concept really is the American dream come true, it’s a very fulfilling feeling.”
Khouri, originally from Eldersburg, Maryland, finished up his studies at the University of North Carolina-Wilmington in 2012, and moved to Corolla in the Outer Banks of North Carolina with a loose plan to offer the “best pot on the beach.” Working every job he could imagine to pay the bills, he offered his seafood boils from his apartment kitchen, and the kitchens of friends, at vacation homes in the evenings. He’d bring the boil to the homes and steam it up there, offering local knowledge and some fun along with the food.
The first year, Khouri did about 10 boils, the next year 30, the year after 60 and by the fourth year, more than 100 events. By 2019, Outer Banks Boil Company had expanded to four locations in two states and did more than 1,100 catered events that year. In 2020, the burgeoning brand added a fifth location in its third state and is on pace to cater more than 2,500 events by the end of the year.
“The response has been nothing short of amazing, but it really wasn’t until folks started expressing interest in taking our concept and putting it in their areas that we knew we were truly onto something,” Khouri says. “Late last year, we began answering the call for even more locations and started exploring nationwide franchising as an option.”
So what exactly is a boil and how does it work?
Jumbo shrimp, spicy andouille sausage, red bliss potatoes, corn on the cob and sweet Vidalia onions are layered, seasoned to perfection and expertly steamed together in a boiling pot of spiced water. Seafood such as snow crab legs, clams, mussels, scallops and lobster tails can also be added, as well as local favorites depending on store location. For non-seafood fans, Outer Banks Boil Company also offers pulled pork, barbecue, coleslaw , cornbread muffins and key lime pie for dessert.
When cooking is complete, all the yummy goodness is dropped onto a table fully equipped with a table cloth, plates, forks, knives, and all the other essential utensils and fix-ins for a traditional Carolina low-country boil.
“Our goal is to provide our customers not just a meal, but a memory,” notes Khouri. “With our years of experience fine-tuning these events, now franchise owners can enjoy the benefits of our alternative dining offerings without the need for a restaurant. This concept is a hit both on and off the beach!”
Khouri is also quick to acknowledge that the Covid-19 pandemic has actually fueled demand for his business. He continues, “While many restaurants struggled to adapt their systems and processes to continue operations during Covid-19, our concept was perfectly prepared for the shift in the landscape. As dining rooms shut down throughout the country, the demand for takeout food and the restaurant experience rose, which helped our concept flourish during the lockdowns and continue providing people with access to delicious and authentic low-country seafood boils.”
To augment the company’s growth plans, Outer Banks Boil Company is seeking entrepreneurial and driven franchisees to partner with. Including a franchise fee of $45,000, the initial investment range to open an Outer Banks Boil Company franchise location is $116,000 to $225,000. As a pioneering concept in the franchise industry, the Outer Banks Boil Company is a one-of-a-kind opportunity.
News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by FSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.