FSR 50: Top 10 Chains Based on AUV

The Cheesecake Factory

The restaurants on this list excel at performing consistently across their portfolios, as evidenced by 2014 average unit volumes that place them among the highest-performing brands in the industry whether compared with other chains or independent operators

The average unit volume of the full-service chains in this year’s Top 10 list ranged from $8 million to nearly $15 million—impressive by any standard, but particularly noteworthy when viewed alongside other high performers in the industry. Even Applebee’s, the full-service chain that outperforms all others based on its total annual revenues, has an AUV of about $2.5 million. In fact—of the chains that Technomic ranks in its top 50 list based on systemwide sales in 2014—the majority have an AUV that ranges from $2–$4 million. For our Top 10 list by AUV, FSR examined all full-service chains with 10 or more units, but excluded chains with resort and retail components.

Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House

AUV: $14.9 million

In 2014, Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House had total revenues that topped $150 million with each unit reaching nearly $15 million in sales, which is partly explained by an average check of $110. The brand credits its chef-driven cuisine and unparalleled hospitality for setting it apart from the competition. Home of USDA Prime-grade, wet-aged steaks that are hand cut at the time of ordering, the Double Eagle Steak House features a swarming-service model, meaning diners are served by multiple waitstaff simultaneously. In 2014, systemwide sales increased by 4.5 percent, and two of the Double Eagle Steak House locations were included in OpenTable’s 2014 Diner’s Choice Awards. With 11 steak houses now open, the brand plans to add one more store to its lineup this year.

Mastro’s Restaurants

AUV: $14.5 million

Mastro’s Restaurants operates a chain of sophisticated fine-dining steakhouses and seafood concepts in affluent areas within major markets. The company added one new unit in 2014, bringing the chain to 13 stores. This year, Mastro’s Steakhouse opened in Washington, D.C., following the model established at its operations in Chicago, New York City, Las Vegas, and multiple locations in Arizona and California. Each follows the format defined by the original Mastro’s, which opened in 1999 in Scottsdale, Arizona. Mastro’s 2014 sales of nearly $167 million were an 8.3 percent increase over the previous year. In 2013, Mastro’s was acquired by Landry’s hospitality group, which owns more than 450 restaurant, hotel, and casino properties in the U.S. The brand’s next location is slated to open in 2017 in Houston.


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