Foodservice Equipment Reports

CHD Expert Reports Total U.S. Restaurant Units Finally Claw Back to 2009 Levels

The number of total restaurant units in the U.S. is finally back to pre-recession levels, according to CHD Expert, the Chicago-based foodservice database and analytic firm. According to CHD Expert’s “2009-2014 Commercial Trends Data Report,” net restaurant units grew by 2% in 2014, a net gain of 14,648, up from a 1.2% net gain in net restaurant operations in 2013. The total number is now back to total unit levels in 2009. The firm said 316,000 commercial units closed during that six year span, some 40% of the entire market total. Last year 58,081 new restaurant units opened their doors, a 22% increase over openings in 2013.

CHD Expert said most menu segments experienced net unit growth last year, with fast-casual concepts leading the way. Smoothie/juice concepts had strong gains, as did fine-dining and upscale restaurant segments. Among the states, Texas (9.2% net increase), North Dakota (4.9%) and Florida (4.8%) saw the biggest gains in percentage terms. Unit growth in Texas and North Dakota is likely to slow or even reverse this year as both economies are affected by the downturn in the oil and gas economy because of the big drop in energy prices. 

“The health of the restaurant industry correlates strongly with the health of the economy, and it is encouraging to see so many new establishments beginning their journey to success,” said Brad Bloom, V.P.-Sales and Marketing at CHD Expert, The Americas.

CHD Expert’s “2009-2014 Commercial Trends Data Report” can be accessed at A sample of the report for the state of Colorado can be downloaded at

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