Winner, winner, chicken cheeseburger dinner?
Popeyes is famous for its buttery biscuits and Louisiana-style fried chicken, but some say there’s room for something new in the Popeye’s experience. If the rumors are true, Restaurant Brands International, Inc. (owner of Burger King) is in advanced talks with Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc. about a chain takeover.
What’s the deal?
According to Bloomberg, knowledgeable sources say the deal could be announced as soon as this week, though nothing is set in stone just yet. The same sources claim talks were held last summer, but no agreement was reached.
If the deal goes through this time, Restaurant Management would add a cool $1.37 billion to their current $25 billion estimated market value. Popeyes only operates 2,594 locations worldwide, compared to Burger King’s vast 15,243.
There’s plenty of room to grow, and now’s the time to do it.
The National Chicken Council (yes, that’s a real thing, and yes, they have a website full of chicken puns) says 2017 is the year of the chicken, with Americans on track to eat a record 91.7 pounds per person. That’s up over 225 percent since 1960.
[clickToTweet tweet=”If this acquisition goes through, Popeyes could grow faster than ever before. ” quote=”With an experienced global organization like Restaurant Management at the helm, Popeyes could grow faster than ever before. “]
Unlike other major fast food chains like McDonald’s, the fried chicken chain hasn’t struggled to recover from the Great Recession; instead, it’s experienced impressive earnings growth of 14.1 percent since 2008.
What might be missing is true product innovation. The Popeyes menu has long been simple, focused on fried chicken and biscuits. Taco Bell has capitalized on the chicken madness by adding a chalupa with a shell literally made of fried chicken to its menu, and even Shake Shack now offers a best-selling fried chicken sandwich.
Something new at Popeyes usually means a new seasoning, instead of a truly new menu item.
But under Restaurant Management, Popeyes could be set to do something cool, like the chicken fries and Mac and Cheetos at Burger King. Those biscuits are an obvious target for newness, as the chain could build both sandwiches and innovative sides (Stuff them with mashed potatoes! Stuff them with popcorn chicken and shrimp!). Even the beans and rice could be twisted into something new – cover them in seasoned breading and deep fry them! Go crazy, Popeyes, and keep going.