This is part of Nation's Restaurant News’ annual Top 100 report, a proprietary census ranking the foodservice industry’s largest restaurant chains and companies by sales and unit data, among other metrics.
Even the concepts with the healthiest domestic systemwide sales growth in this year’s Top 100 report were not immune to the slowed growth that beset the industry in 2013. Nearly all of the top 10 growth chains on this year’s roster experienced a contraction in the rate at which their sales grew in the Latest Year, with last year’s No. 1 growth chain Firehouse Subs slipping to the No. 8 position in this year’s report, clocking a growth rate that was nearly 19 percentage points lower than that of the Preceding Year.
Still, the concepts that made this top 10 list based on year-over-year growth in U.S. systemwide sales managed to demonstrate impressive numbers, some of which upward of 20 percent. Interestingly — if not surprisingly — that range describes the growth rates of two of the three newcomers to the Top 100 this year, Jersey Mike’s Subs and Yard House, which claimed the Nos. 1 and 2 slots on the list, respectively. The third chain making its Top 100 debut, Noodles & Company, is also represented on this list at No. 7.
While Limited-Service chains, which dominated the sales growth list last year, are still well-represented in this field of the top 10 growth chains, they gave up some ground to the Casual-Dining and C-Store segments, which both added a representative. Dropping off the list was Moe’s Southwest Grill, which slipped from No. 9 to the No. 17 growth spot in the Latest Year, and former No. 10 Little Caesars Pizza, which fell even farther than Moe’s, to the No. 35 spot this year.
The 10 chains that made this year’s systemwide sales growth list are profiled here, with key metrics and year-to-year percentage growth rates.