Fried chicken
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Franchise 500 2023
2023 Franchise 500 Rank
#381 Ranked #115 last year
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Initial investment
$28K - $297K
Units as of 2023
1,092 Decrease 18% over 3 years

Chester's, which was founded in 1952, is a quick-serve restaurant that sells fresh, never frozen, marinated chicken that's double-breaded and fried using a secret, family recipe. There are over 1,300 locations in convenience stores, truck stops, and supermarkets. After more than 50 years of business, Chester's may know how to fry with love and is happy to share what they do.

Though they may sell fried chicken nowadays, Chester's started in 1952 frying doughnuts. Since the shift in product offerings, the company operated strictly as a corporate-owned entity before branching out to franchising in 2004.

Why You May Want to Open a Chester's Franchise

Chester's sells a simple menu of bone-in chicken, chicken tenders, and biscuits. For sides, you may get classics like potato wedges and mashed potatoes and gravy. In 2019, they introduced their new chicken sandwich. They also serve fried chicken livers and gizzards.

When you open a Chester's franchise, you may become part of a company that believes in a winning attitude. No one is above a job, and most work and win as a team. They are also committed to open and honest communication, encouraging that everyone do the right thing, even if no one is watching. And though they emphasize that hard work is the right kind of work, Chester's strives to foster a fun atmosphere.

As a franchisee, you have access to a Chester's representative that might help you prepare for your grand opening with extensive training and support services. They generally teach you how to minimize waste, calculate margins, upsell, and, of course, how to fry their chicken the right way.

What Might Make a Chester's Franchise a Good Choice?

Between their commitment to loyal customers and different options to drive sales home, Chester's has been ranked in Entrepreneur’s Franchise 500 many times in the past several years. 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.

A business that updates procedures, standards, and menus may be more likely to survive changing economies than ones that do not. Chester's loves to explore new ideas and listens to suggestions that come in. Keeping customers engaged with the brand through social media and giveaways also might ensure steady clientele. With exciting promotions that highlight new, featured items as well as old favorites, you may draw in customers with quality food.

How To Open a Chester's Franchise

To be part of the Chester's team, you should make sure you’re financially ready for an initial investment made up of a franchise fee and other startup costs. If you need help funding your startup or covering equipment costs, Chester's might offer third-party financing options to help cover the franchise fee, startup cost, and equipment.

If you wish to open up a Chester's franchise, you may have to fill out the basic inquiry form. If approved, you may expect to go through a few dozen hours of hands-on training and about an additional few hours of classroom training. You may also need to hire about a few staff members to operate your location. As you move forward with your location, franchisees have three different franchise location options to choose from: store-in-store, express, and supermarket.

Find Your Perfect Franchise

Company Overview

About Chester's

Industry Food
Related Categories Chicken
Founded 1952
Leadership Wynn Giles, Managing Director
Corporate Address 2020 Cahaba Rd.
Birmingham, AL 35223
Social Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram

Business Overview

Franchising Since 2004 (19 years)
# of employees at HQ 53
Where seeking

This company is offering new franchisees in the following US states: Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Wyoming

This company is offering new franchisees in the following international regions: Central America, Canada

# of Units 1,092 (as of 2023)

Information for Franchisees

Here's what you need to know if you're interested in opening a Chester'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 Information Circle
Initial Investment Information Circle
$27,500 - $296,500
Term of Agreement Information Circle
5 years
Is franchise term renewable? Yes
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Financing Options

Some franchisors offer in-house financing, while others have relationships with third-party financing sources to which they refer qualified franchisees.

Third Party Financing Chester's has relationships with third-party sources which offer financing to cover the following: franchise fee, startup costs, equipment

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 up to 4 days
Classroom Training 10.25 hours
Ongoing Support
Meetings & Conventions
Toll-Free Line
Grand Opening
Online Support
Security & Safety Procedures
Field Operations
Franchisee Intranet Platform
Marketing Support
Ad Templates
National Media
Regional Advertising
Social Media
Email Marketing
Loyalty Program/App


Additional details about running this franchise.

Is absentee ownership allowed? No
Can this franchise be run from home/mobile unit? Information Circle
Can this franchise be run part time? Information Circle
# of employees required to run 8
Are exclusive territories available? Information Circle
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Franchise 500 Ranking History

Compare where Chester's landed on this year's Franchise 500 Ranking versus previous years.

Additional Rankings

Curious to know where Chester's ranked on other franchise lists? Find out below.

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Updated: December 12th, 2022