Franchised Sandwich Shops

Franchised Sandwich Shops

It seems like every time we visit our son Ron in Wilmington, NC, there is a new franchised sandwich shop that has opened in the area. In gathering data for our 2012 Business Reference Guide (it is hard to believe that this will be the 22nd edition), we began playing with some of the figures. Following is an update on some of the shops. The listing of the various franchises has the rule of thumb for pricing them along with the average annual sales figures that we have so far. The rest of the data is just our rough calculations.

Name of FranchisePricing Rule of ThumbAverage Annual Sales Figure
Hungry Howies35%$452,000
Roly Poly35%N/A
Jimmy Johns65-70%$1,117,661
Jersey Mikes50%N/A

Start-up Costs Average $145,000 to $317,931

Average Sales – Approx. $500,000 year

Average Rule of Thumb 45% of annual sales

Average Price $225,000

Average Profit $100,000

Business brokers handle the resale of many of these franchises. Today, almost every conceivable small business concept has at least one franchise in it – and some have many. Years ago almost every town had a sub shop. (In Philadelphia, where I was raised, they were called hoagie shops, and I suspect they still are). In other areas they are called grinders, etc. They can be nice little money makers in the right location and for a hard worker. It has been said that to be really successful in sandwich shops, you need to own three or four.

To keep up to date on the world of franchising, you need to visit the web site: It has lots of interesting and valuable information. For example, they receive important information from the SBA including a list of franchises whose franchisees failed to pay back their SBA loans. Here is a list of the sandwich franchises and their percentage of franchises who failed to pay back their loans. We have rounded off the percentages and they are listed in order of from best to worst. Jimmy Johns had the lowest figure, which means they had the fewest franchisees that did not pay back their loans. This list covered the years 2001 to 2010. The source was: SBA, May 2011.

Jimmy John’s04%
Firehouse Subs15%
Philly Connection50%
Mr Goodcents60%

One might think that the higher the loan default, the riskier it is. However, keep in mind that a franchise such as Mr Goodcents or the Philly Connection, since they’re certainly not as well known as Subway, might attract franchisees who are not as financially qualified as the buyer for Subway who may be using SBA financing to purchase additional units.

Help Wanted!

If you sold a sandwich franchise in the last year or so, I would appreciate any information you could supply. You can simply fill out and submit our franchise resale form online. It will ask basic information such as the name, state, annual sales and selling price. Feel free to email me with any questions or other information you want to furnish.