There are 26,000 Subways in the U.S. – and the chain doesn’t think that is nearly enough.
Subway CEO Fred DeLuca believes the chain has room to add 7,000 to 8,000 more restaurants in the U.S., according to Bloomberg.
The growth will likely take place over the next decade, and, according to DeLuca, may result in even more than 8,000 new shops if the sandwich chain can increase demand.
Subway is attempting to attract more American taste buds with a new sandwich add-on – hummus. The chain reportedly began testing the topping in April. For the vegetarian customer, hummus adds some flavor to the meatless market, just as Subway's much-hyped avocado rollout did in 2011.
Another adjustment on Subway's plate is serving up thinner slices of meat. While tests are currently limited to restaurants in Illinois, franchisees have found that 12 thinner slices of meat on a foot long, compared to the current eight, increases customer's perception of how much they're getting and their appreciation for the sandwich.
Will mashed up chickpeas and thinner slices of meat be enough to create a craving for 8,000 new Subway restaurants in America? If not, the chain doesn’t necessarily need to worry – 67 percent of Subway shops are now located outside of the U.S. As the company explores new areas, with countries including Brazil, the U.K. and India topping the list, the sandwich chain is creating demand for thousands of new restaurants, not just in the US but across the world.