SONIC Drive-In offers a proven business model that has allowed our franchise owners to give back to their community
SONIC® is rightly called America’s drive-in franchise for a reason — with more than 3,500 locations across the United States, the iconic brand is beloved for serving up hot, fresh and made-to-order food, and also for the meaningful impact our franchise owners have in their communities.
“Giving back to the community has elevated our business,” says Jerry and Denise Conway, multi-unit franchise owners in Texas and recipients of the Troy Smith Award. ”We don’t miss an opportunity to be part of a charity. We have a reputation as SONIC, and we are right at the forefront of every event. Just about any event in town, you’ll see the SONIC logo on it; that’s how we built our business. We were the forerunner in a lot of things going on in SONIC today, and I still think it’s the best franchise and would recommend it to anyone.”
There’s never been a better time to open a SONIC® Drive-In franchise in your community. We offer a QSR investment with remarkable momentum driven by three things: Leadership from our best-in-class franchise support team, a diverse menu that maximizes all five dayparts and the unprecedented brand recognition generated by our popular Two Guys national advertising campaign. SONIC franchisees saw average gross sales by store increase from $1,072,000 in 2012 to $1,246,000 in 2015, and new locations are performing at record levels — with more than 25% of our stores far exceeding $1.5 million in annual sales.
SONIC Drive-In franchise owners enjoy era of record-setting revenue growth
It’s not just marketing driving SONIC’s growth. SONIC franchises produced average gross revenues of more than $1,246,000 in 2015, as disclosed in Item 19 of the FDD. New locations are also performing at record levels, and more than a quarter of SONIC stores far exceed $1.5 million in annual sales.
At the same time, SONIC’s iconic brand image and nostalgia for the carhop experience make each SONIC franchise location a community hub. For SONIC franchisees, getting involved in the community not only makes good business sense, but also helps build the brand and foster a sense of connectedness. Additionally, it’s a pretty big way to make a real difference. For example, take the #ThanksTeach effort.
In partnership with local franchise owners, school systems and the community, SONIC Drive-In has committed $15 million over the next five years to Limeades for Learning, money that will be used to fund essential learning materials and teacher development, inspiring creativity and learning in today’s youth. This kind of dedication to youth development and learning is just part of the rewarding work that comes from owning a SONIC Drive-In franchise.
“We’re part of all the civic groups and churches,” says Greg Rowden, a multi-unit franchise owner in Arkansas, noting his SONIC team once paid to build an entire baseball field. “When we see a need, we try to step in and help fulfill it.”
SONIC is rapidly expanding across the country
SONIC is growing into communities across the country, with available territories across the United States. Earlier this year, we unveiled plans to open the first SONIC Drive-Ins in Hawaii and company leadership notes opportunity abounds for the right entrepreneur. In addition, we announced 33 new franchise stores in California, where we continue actively seeking potential franchise operators.
More franchises are coming on board every day, meaning no matter where our customers go, they’ll find a SONIC and feel at home. That’s just one of the many factors driving more than 3 million customers to our stores each and every day.
“SONIC customers use us more broadly, rather than just breakfast, lunch or dinner,” says Senior Vice President of Development Drew Ritger. “It’s given us a great platform to use our innovation to make each of those dayparts more relevant. There are dollars to be spent or consumed, and SONIC is a great choice.”
Bring the SONIC franchise to your community today
The franchise fee for a single unit is $45,000, with a total estimated investment for a traditional SONIC ranging from $1.02 million to $1.77 million (excluding land). The net worth of a partner can be used toward the total net worth/liquidity requirements, which helps to ease costs. The term of a traditional SONIC franchise is 20 years, plus a 10-year renewal.
“There’s a lot of geography left for us for growth in the United States. We have huge national cable exposure with our advertising now, so that in all markets we’re on television 12 months out of the year,” says SONIC Drive-In CEO Cliff Hudson. “During the next 10 years we could add up to 1,000 stores. There is a lot of open space up and down the West Coast, up and down the East Coast and in Florida and California, particularly. Even in our core markets, there are still development capabilities.”
Learn more about SONIC franchise
For in-depth details about the SONIC franchise opportunity, request franchise ownership information. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.