The Next 20 is the third installment in a series of exclusive NRN reports, including the recent Top 100 and Second 100, covering the performance of the largest organizations in foodservice. NRN seeks to present relevant comparisons of the largest foodservice competitors by tracking U.S. consumer foodservice sales.

Figures are compiled using corporate documents and research studies as well as information from NRN news coverage, government agencies, chain officials, franchisees and industry analysts. The data shown may represent NRN estimates or chain-provided projections or chain reported results.

Chains in The Next 20 booked U.S. systemwide sales below the $140.9 million threshold to qualify for this year’s Second 100. Chains appear just once on the roster for Next 20. Beginning this year, chains that were previously in the Top 100 or Second 100 may be included in The Next 20 if those chains have not been in the Top 200 in five years and have at least two consecutive years of growth in U.S. systemwide sales.

Key terms

Estimated sales per unit: Sales-per-unit figures are calculated using a proprietary formula that considers systemwide sales and change in year-end number of units. Units with atypical sizes or sales capacities may be excluded. Because of these considerations, figures may not necessarily match the same-store sales, comparable-store sales or average unit volumes reported by chain parent companies.

Fiscal year-end: The year ended closest to Dec. 31, 2013. If a fiscal year’s ending date occurs in the first half of a month, the preceding full month is shown.

Latest Year and Preceding Year: Two consecutive years,  the most recent of which ended in the month and year indicated in the fiscal year-end column.

U.S. systemwide foodservice sales: Foodservice sales at all domestic restaurants, stores or other outlets in a chain, including company-owned, company-managed, franchised and licensed units. Sales from merchandise, video games, facilities rentals and other nonfood sources, when discernable, are excluded.