Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux announced Chris Dawson, former multi-brand president at Driven Brands, as its Chief Executive Officer. In under six years, Dawson rose from his initial role establishing the Take 5 Oil Change brand to his most recent role as president of the more than 1,400-unit Paint & Collision vertical at Driven Brands.
“Walk-On’s has been recognized as one of the top concepts in the industry, a testament to the high quality food and family-friendly atmosphere,” Dawson says. “My last few years have been spent scaling brands nationally, and I look forward to leading Walk-On’s on this same journey.”
Dawson has already shared his plans for continuing to support the brand’s growth and bolster its leadership presence in the restaurant and franchise industries, including building out a high-performing and seasoned leadership team.
“Chris and I share a passion for building a strong culture and a winning team,” adds Brandon Landry, cofounder and chairman of Walk-On’s. “He has built successful franchise systems, and the teams that allow him to deliver on the goals of franchisee profitability and amazing guest satisfaction.”
The brand has almost doubled in size since private equity partners, 10 Point Capital, first invested in 2020 and they see no slowing in growth. “Walk-On’s will be a 500-plus unit brand. The next few years are about leadership and building a world-class infrastructure to support our franchisees as we scale. Chris joining the brand underscores our commitment to investing in support of this growth,” adds Scott Pressly, managing director of 10 Point Capital.
The brand, now in its 20th year, recently opened its 78th restaurant location, and is already in 15 states. With an average unit volume of $4.8 million, and 116 locations in the development pipeline, Walk-On’s is attracting interest from potential franchise partners across the country.
The brand was founded by Brandon Landry in 2003, and subsequently attracted former pro-football quarterback, Drew Brees, and 10 Point Capital, a private equity firm focused on building dominant franchise brands, as owners.
Dawson succeeds Scott Taylor, who transitioned to the role in January after serving as COO and president of the brand for north of a decade.