The development of nontraditional locations has been an area of growth for restaurant companies in 2013, and that push is expected to continue into 2014.
Airports, travel centers, college campuses, hospitals, convenience stores and military bases can prove to be high-volume locations where guests are looking for portable and fresh options that go beyond a pre-packed sandwich and chips.
Bob Evans Farms Inc., for example, this year opened its first Bob Evans Express prototype at the BMW USA manufacturing plant in Spartanburg, S.C., in partnership with AVI Food Systems Inc., and is planning further on-site growth.
Jamba Juice, which has been rapidly growing its self-service JamboGo outlets in schools, this year signed a deal to roll out 1,000 of the units in Target retail stores.
Schlotzsky’s recently announced a deal with Houchens Industries, operator of the Crossroads IGA grocery and gas stations, to open full-sized restaurants within the stores, as well as drive thru service. The deal will also likely include outlets for sister brands Cinnabon and Carvel, also owned by Schlotzsky’s parent Focus Brands Inc.
The Italian quick-service Fazoli’s is also expanding in gas-and-convenience stores and also has some sites at airports and college campuses in the works.
The following three restaurant brands are also making noteworthy moves into the nontraditional space: