🍟 12/13/2021 – California Pizza Kitchen And Nautical Bowls

Franchise Headlines

California Pizza Kitchen Is Now Franchising

The Scoop

The casual-dining chain is starting a new growth campaign to build on their 200 unit presence in America. This move comes after some recent struggle however.

Its footprint decreased by about 13% from 2019 to 2020, and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July 2020. They emerged from bankruptcy status in October of last year.

This will be the first time in their 35 year history that they’ve offered franchises.

The Wolf’s Take  🍟

Pizza elitists will scoff at the thought of dining at CPK, but that’s because they haven’t eaten the grilled steak or chicken-bacon-ranch pizza (trust me, both are ).

This is a concept that’s well-known for their unique menu offerings, and has built a household name brand over their 35 year history.

I’ll be interested to see what the buildout cost will look like on one of these, but either way, buying a brand with established mindshare in consumers is a big advantage.

Read the full story here.

More Headlines

Teriyaki Madness Headed to San Antonio with 3 Store Deal
We covered this emerging QSR in week 3!

McDonald’s Commits $250 To Improve Franchisee Diversity
The burger giant has received scrutiny from minority franchisees

FAT Brands Is Building 10 Restaurants in Libya
The parent company of Fatburger, Johnny Rockets, and 13 other restaurants will be building co-branded restaurants

Franchise Breakdown:

Nautical Bowls

Fast Facts


  • Founded in 2018; franchising since 2021
  • Based in Minnesota; 31 locations open/in development
  • Nautical Bowls is a fast-casual restaurant that combines healthy, fresh superfood bowls with an uplifting atmosphere

Fees + Investment

  • Royalty: 6% of gross sales
  • Brand Fund: Floating, but will never exceed 2%
  • Franchise Fee: $30,000
  • Initial Investment: $150,000 – $249,000

Financial Performance

  • The below table illustrates the performance for the previous 2 fiscal years for their first location in Minnetonka, Minnesota

*Labor Costs does NOT include an owners salary

The Wolf’s Take  🍟

Nautical Bowls caught my attention right off the bat with its low investment range and impressive performance through the pandemic.

In addition to the unit economics, the founders partnered with Peter Taunton to head up franchise development – Peter previously worked at Snap Fitness, and helped bring that brand to over 1,000 locations.

With already 31+ units in development in its first year of franchising, Nautical Bowls is off to a great start and is definitely a brand to watch!

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