- 2023 Franchise 500 Rank
#434 Ranked #276 last year
- Initial investment
$869K - $1.3M
- Units as of 2022
The Captain is calling: 'Whalecome' to a refreshing adventure! Captain D's is a chain of fast-food seafood that provides casual dining and high-quality food, with genuine Southern hospitality. Pier-ing into Captain D's beginnings, its humble start back in Tennessee of 1969, goes to show how it has been open for more than 45 years. If you are ready to be outstanding in a sea of ordinary, you may wish to open a Captain D's.
Read on to see why the Captain D's franchise could be a great catch for potential franchisees.
Why You May Want to Start a Captain D's Franchise
The significant advantage of owning a Captain D's franchise is that you may have very little franchise competition. You also may be given the opportunity to stand out from other restaurants and not be in the ocean of sameness that other restaurants tend to find themselves in. In addition, the franchisor sources the seafood and negotiates the best prices for franchisees.
Captain D's could be a game-changer and market disruptor that has continued to experience success. Many times throughout its existence, Captain D's has been ranked in Entrepreneur’s Franchise 500. This ranking is based on an evaluation of more than 150 data points in the areas of costs and fees, size and growth, franchisee support, brand strength, and financial strength and stability.
What Might Make a Captain D's Franchise a Good Choice?
Captain D's believes that success is sustainable. To be part of the Captain D's team, you should make sure you’re financially ready for an initial investment made up of a franchise fee and other startup costs. In addition, ongoing fees will include advertising, royalty, and renewal fees. Additional expenses may include incorporation fees, business license fees, legal fees, and utility deposits.
The brand is currently in ongoing development, and it is estimated that the new restaurant prototypes can help franchisees reduce their startup costs. Even if startup costs are reduced, franchisees will still need to meet the company's set net worth and liquid capital requirements.
Potential franchisees can choose to cater to customers who opt to dine in, drive through, or carry out their fast food seafood.
How To Open a Captain D's Franchise
You can jump into this opportunity and become a Captain D's franchisee by submitting an inquiry form. Before making any financial commitment or signing an agreement, you must perform your due diligence and establish if this is the right opportunity for you. Speak to existing franchisees and ask questions directed to Captain D's team.
As you decide if you wish to open a Captain D's franchise, make sure you take time to explore the opportunity. Research the brand and your local area to see if a Captain D's franchise would do well in your community. If there are many other seafood restaurants and/or fast food places in the area, you may want to reconsider your decision.
Make waves in your community by providing delicious seafood at an affordable price with a Captain D’s franchise!
About Captain D's
- Franchising Since
- 1969 (2023-1969 years)
- # of employees at HQ
- Where seeking
This company is offering new franchisees throughout the US.
- # of Units
- 532 (as of 2022)
Information for Franchisees
Here's what you need to know if you're interested in opening a Captain D's franchise.
Financial Requirements & Ongoing Fees
Here's what you can expect to spend to start the business and what ongoing fees the franchisor charges throughout the life of the business.
- Initial Franchise Fee
Definition: The initial fee paid to a franchisor to join their system
What you need to know: Found in Item 5 of the FDD, this may be a flat fee, or may vary based on territory size, experience, or other factors.The franchise fee is an up-front (one-time) cost that a new franchisee pays to the franchisor. This fee is usually due at the signing of the franchise agreement and covers the right to use the franchisor's trademarks, name, and related business systems.
- Initial Investment
- $868,600 - $1,283,200
Definition: The total amount necessary to begin operation of the franchise
What you need to know: The initial investment includes the franchise fee, along with other startup expenses such as real estate, equipment, supplies, business licenses, and working capital. This is outlined in a chart in Item 7 of the FDD, showing a range of possible costs from low to high.
- Net Worth Requirement
Definition: The minimum net worth you must have in order to qualify to become a franchisee of this company
What you need to know: Net worth is the value of a person's assets minus liabilities. Assets include cash, stocks, retirement accounts, and real estate. Liabilities include items like mortgages, car payments, and credit card debt.
- Cash Requirement
Definition: The minimum liquid capital you must have available in order to qualify to become a franchisee of this company.
- Veteran Incentives
- 50% off first-unit franchise fee; reduced royalty fee for first year
Definition: A discount or other incentive offered to military veterans who buy a franchise with this company.
- Royalty Fee
Definition: A ongoing fee paid to the franchisor on a regular basis.
What you need to know: Most franchisors require franchisees to pay an ongoing royalty fee, which is detailed in Item 6 of the FDD. This fee is typically a percentage of weekly or monthly gross sales, but may also be a flat weekly, monthly, or annual fee.
- Ad Royalty Fee
Definition: An going fee paid to the franchisor on a regular basis to support advertising or marketing efforts.
What you need to know: This may also be called advertising fee, marketing fee, brand fund fee, and more, but the basic purpose is the same-- to support promotion of the brand systemwide. As with the royalty fee, it is detailed in Item 6 of the FDD, and can be a percentage of weekly or monthly gross sales or a weekly, monthly, or annual fee.
- Term of Agreement
- 20 years
Definition: The length of time your franchise agreement will last.
What you need to know: Franchise terms are typically anywhere from 5 to 20 years in length, but are sometimes instead dependent on factors such as the term of your lease. Once your term is up, you may have the option to renew your agreement, typically for a smaller fee than the original franchise fee.
- Is franchise term renewable?
Some franchisors offer in-house financing, while others have relationships with third-party financing sources to which they refer qualified franchisees.
- Third Party Financing
- Captain D's has relationships with third-party sources which offer financing to cover the following: franchise fee, startup costs, equipment, inventory, accounts receivable, payroll
Training & Support Offered
Franchisors offer initial training programs and a variety of ongoing support options to help franchisees run their businesses.
- On-The-Job Training
- 219 hours
- Classroom Training
- 21 hours
- Ongoing Support
NewsletterMeetings & ConventionsToll-Free LineGrand OpeningOnline SupportField OperationsSite SelectionProprietary SoftwareFranchisee Intranet Platform
- Marketing Support
Co-op AdvertisingAd TemplatesRegional AdvertisingSocial MediaSEOWebsite DevelopmentEmail MarketingLoyalty Program/App
Additional details about running this franchise.
- Is absentee ownership allowed?
- Can this franchise be run from home/mobile unit?
Definition: The business can be run from your home and/or a vehicle, and it is not necessary to have a retail facility, office space, or warehouse.
- Can this franchise be run part time?
Definition: This business can be run by the owner on a part-time basis (less than 40 hours per week) and/or as a side business; it is not necessary for the business to be open/run full-time.
- # of employees required to run
- Are exclusive territories available?
Definition: An exclusive territory is a fixed area in which you are given the right to operate and in which no other units of the same franchise may be opened.
What you need to know: Territory size may be based on factors such as radius, population size, zip codes, and more. Details can be found in Item 12 of the FDD.
Interested in ownership opportunities like Captain D's? Request a free consultation with a Franchise Advisor now.
Franchise 500 Ranking History
Compare where Captain D's landed on this year's Franchise 500 Ranking versus previous years.
Curious to know where Captain D's ranked on other franchise lists? Find out below.
Ranked #1 in Seafood in 2022
These are the companies that not only ranked in this year’s highly competitive Franchise 500, but ranked #1 in their respective industry categories.
Ranked #434 in 2023
Entrepreneur’s 44th annual Franchise 500® ranking shines a light on the unique challenges and changes that have shaped the franchise industry over the last year—and how franchisors have adapted and evolved to meet them.
Ranked #1 in Seafood in 2022
Our annual list of the top restaurant and other food franchises, divided up by category, is the perfect place to start if you’re craving a food-based business opportunity.
Ranked #28 in 2022
Our ranking of the top 150 franchises offering incentives and other programs to help veterans become franchisees.
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