Foodservice Equipment Reports

Wendy’s Debuts In The Other Georgia, Continues Selling Stores

The first Wendy’s outlet in Georgia to open under a year-old agreement made its debut in the country’s capital last month. The U.S. ambassador to Georgia, Richard Norland, was in a crowd of hundreds of Georgians who flocked to the Sept. 12 grand opening in Tbilisi. Wendy’s Georgia franchisee, The Wissol Group, plans to open at least 15 restaurants over the next seven years in Georgia and the Republic of Azerbaijan.

Back at home, the Dublin, Ohio, chain has been busy selling stores to franchise operators. By the second quarter of 2014, it will have sold 425 stores and reduced its systemwide ownership to 15%, down from 22%, of all stores.

The sales also should help accelerate the company’s restaurant remodeling program. At the end of April, the Wendy’s system had opened 86 new and reimaged Image Activation restaurants; it expects to reimage 50% of its company-operated restaurants by the end of 2015. A multimillion-dollar incentive program was expanded earlier this year to include all three of the chain’s Image Activation tiers. Thus far, Wendy's franchisees have applied to re-image nearly 150 restaurants and company execs expect most of the 100 restaurants that are in the midst of Image Activation will be open or under construction by the end of this year.

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