Taco John's

Mexican food
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Franchise 500 2023
2024 Franchise 500 Rank
#144 Ranked #154 last year
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Initial investment
$392K - $2M
Units as of 2023
366 Decrease 5% over 3 years

Established in 1969 in Cheyenne, Wyoming, Taco John’s began as a single taco stand. Soon after, they began franchising. Today, Taco John’s has grown into a multi-million dollar business. It is one of the most prominent Mexican chain restaurants in the United States, famous for coining Taco Tuesday® and catering to the tastes of new generations.

Why You May Want to Start a Taco John's Franchise

If you're a franchisee looking for an opportunity to own a Mexican fast-food business, Taco John’s may be the right choice for you. It may also be a smart investment for franchisees who want to own more than one unit—Taco John’s prefers franchisees who have experience running multiple businesses or franchises. Franchisees who have a background in restaurants and a passion for food could fit right into the Taco John’s business model, too.

Taco John’s has proven itself to be a competitive company. For decades, this Mexican food business has grown, establishing nearly 400 locations across the country.

Even though Taco John’s likes a franchisee with experience, the company still offers development support. They provide marketing strategies to help franchisees drive sales. Franchisees will receive multiple weeks of hands-on training and grand opening assistance from Taco John’s. The assistance does not end when your franchise opens, either. Instead, Taco John’s offers continual support throughout the lifetime of your franchise.

What Might Make Taco John’s a Good Choice?

Mexican-inspired flavors are increasingly popular among young people. The term "Taco Tuesday" has also made its way into common vernacular with the majority of the taco-loving population. When a franchisee associates themselves with the brand that coined the phrase, they may end up in the spotlight of taco-hungry generations.

The menu items, including potato oles and breakfast burritos, are largely unique. The restaurant also offers seasonal items on its menu. Aligning its mission to serve bold flavors, Taco John’s makes its dishes using fresh and authentic ingredients.

How to Open a Taco John's Franchise

Before you become a Taco John's franchisee, you will want to research your area. Though people outside of the Millennial and Gen X age brackets enjoy Mexican-inspired flavors, these two generations are the company's primary demographics. You'll also want to consider your potential competition in the area. 

Taco John’s requires a drive-thru option in most of its restaurants. This is important to factor in if you aren't opening a mall, campus, or airport location. Taco John’s offers flexible floor plans for you to choose from, which can influence your location. Additionally, you should assess whether you can handle multiple sites.

Choosing Taco John’s means you have to be ready to jump into company training. The franchise offers on-the-job training and multiple weeks of support from franchise and restaurant experts. As you sign up as a franchisee, the company will assign a franchise official to you. They will help you set up your unit until it is operational. 

As soon as your business is up and running, a regional business consultant will be on hand to guide you. Once you open your doors, it's taco time!

Find Your Perfect Franchise

Company Overview

About Taco John's

Industry Food
Related Categories Mexican Food
Founded 1969
Parent Company Taco John's International Inc.
Leadership Jim Creel, CEO
Corporate Address 808 W. 20th St.
Cheyenne, WY 82001
Social Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram

Business Overview

Franchising Since 1969 (55 years)
# of employees at HQ 83
Where seeking

This company is offering new franchises throughout the US.

# of Units 366 (as of 2023)

Information for Franchisees

Here's what you need to know if you're interested in opening a Taco John'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
$10,000 - $25,000
Initial Investment Information Circle
$392,000 - $1,994,000
Net Worth Requirement Information Circle
$1,000,000 - $500,000,000
Cash Requirement Information Circle
$500,000 - $500,000,000
Royalty Fee Information Circle
Ad Royalty Fee Information Circle
Term of Agreement Information Circle
20 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 Taco John's has relationships with third-party sources which offer financing to cover the following: startup costs, equipment, inventory

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 180 hours
Classroom Training 28 hours
Ongoing Support
Meetings & Conventions
Grand Opening
Online Support
Security & Safety Procedures
Lease Negotiation
Field Operations
Site Selection
Proprietary Software
Franchisee Intranet Platform
Marketing Support
Co-op Advertising
Ad Templates
Regional Advertising
Social Media
Website Development
Email Marketing
Loyalty Program/App


Additional details about running this franchise.

Is absentee ownership allowed? Yes
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 30-45
Are exclusive territories available? Information Circle
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Franchise 500 Ranking History

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

Additional Rankings

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Updated: December 12th, 2022