Wendy’s franchise

Hassle-free business loans to start your Wendy’s franchise.

Famous for their unique, square-shaped hamburger patties, Wendy’s are a giant in the global fast food industry. On a mission to deliver a more homely dining experience than their major competitors, the company has been selling old-fashioned burgers, chicken sandwiches, salads, shakes and fries to delighted diners for more than 50 years.

Wendy's business details

Offering franchise opportunities since 1972, Wendy’s was launched in 1969 in Columbus, Ohio. The founder, Dave Thomas named the business after his daughter Melinda – nicknamed Wendy. Today, the company is based in Dublin, Ohio and they are one of the ‘big three’ burger chains, alongside McDonald’s and Burger King. The business operates in more than 30 countries, and they have over 7,000 restaurants spread across the globe.

Wendy’s restaurant at a glance:

  • US franchised stores: Approx. 5600
  • US company owned stores: 403
  • Required Investor net worth: $1,000,000
  • Required investor liquid cash: $500,000
  • Min. investment: $320,000
  • Max. investment: $4,600,000
  • Standard franchise term: 20 years

Can I start a Wendy’s franchise?

You can if you have very deep pockets. Never mind the minimum net worth and available cash requirements, which run to $1million and $500k respectively, you may face start-up costs of more than four million dollars. Additionally, Wendy’s are quite picky on who they sell their franchises to. They prefer high net worth individuals (obviously) who have previous experience in the food and beverage hospitality industry. Is this you?

How much does a Wendy’s franchise cost?

Wendy’s is a global brand, with annual sales of more than $2billion. As you might expect, buying into a major business like this does not come cheap. Depending on your real estate situation – do you buy, finance or lease your land – the upfront cost to start a new Wendy’s restaurant can range from $320,000 all the way up to $4,600,000. This ranks the start-up cost as medium to very high. The initial franchise fee is $50,000. There are no franchise fee discounts for military veterans.

After opening, you are required to pay an array of ongoing fees and charges. They include:

  • Royalty fee: 4% to 6% of gross sales depending on the type of restaurant
  • National advertising fee: 1.5% to 3.5% of gross sales
  • Local and regional advertising fee: 0.5% of gross sales
  • Technology fee: $6,500 to $12,000 per year
  • Cyber insurance fee: $900 per year
  • In-app transaction fee: 3% per transaction from in-app sales
  • Customer care fee: $95 per month
  • Transfer fee: $5,000 minimum

Estimated key costs to open a Wendy's franchise:

Key Costs GuideLowHigh
Franchise fee$50,000$50,000
Building construction$580,000$2,000,000
Real estate (land)variesvaries
Equipment and computers$415,000$550,000
Pre-opening expenses, including training and operational funds$110,000$190,000
Legal costs$10,000$30,000

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Are Wendy’s franchises profitable?

Yes, very much so. In the US, Wendy’s franchised restaurants average $1,900,000 in gross sales per year and a gross profit, before overhead costs, of approximately $1,400,000. The typical net profit – what you could expect to collect after all costs, is $300,000 per year per franchise. This ranks as very good.

What is the failure rate for a Wendy’s franchise?

Low. The failure rate for a Wendy’s franchise is 2% to 4% per year.

Why should you start a Wendy’s franchise?

If you can get over the initial financial and previous experience hurdles, a Wendy’s restaurant can be an excellent franchise opportunity – good profits, low risk, the backing of a major brand name and a large and loyal customer base. What’s not to like about that? 

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What are the franchise territory policies for Wendy’s?

Franchisees receive the right to operate their Wendy’s Restaurant at a specific location approved by the company and identified in the Franchise Agreement. Franchisees have no exclusive rights or territory associated with the operation of their restaurant.

What franchise resources does Wendy’s offer?

Wendy’s support for franchisees includes:

  • Training: Before opening their restaurant, franchisees and their initial management employees and restaurant crew must attend and complete an initial training program. A typical initial training program is approximately 12-16 weeks and includes online, classroom, virtual instructor led and on-the-job training. Training is conducted at various certified training restaurants throughout the United States. Wendy’s also offers a new global franchisee onboarding program which franchisees must attend and complete. 
  • Marketing support: Wendy’s helps its franchisees with national and local advertising and marketing support. 
  • Third-party financing: Wendy’s can provide limited financial support for investors via third-party funders, but you may be able to secure more economical or flexible financing from the many independent funders who provide business loans to franchise operators.
  • Technology and innovation: The company offers technology support and access to proprietary software. 

What is the process for starting a Wendy's franchise?

It begins with an application. Start the process here.

Secure franchise funding with Swoop

Starting a new franchise can be an exciting opportunity, but it’s easy to get lost in a maze of business loan applications that can make funding your new Wendy’s franchise like too much hard work. Instead, cut out the hassle and cut to the chase. Swoop has the best lenders for the best franchises across the US. Just tell us what you need and leave the rest to us.

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Written by

Chris Godfrey

Chris is a freelance copywriter and content creator. He has been active in the marketing, advertising, and publishing industries for more than twenty-five years. Writing for Wells Fargo Bank, Visa, Experian, Ebay, Flywire, insurers and pension funds, his words have appeared online and in print to inform, entertain and explain the complex world of US consumer and business finance.

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Article sources
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Swoop requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate.

Franchise funding: https://swoopfunding.com/us/blog/funding-your-franchise-a-guide-for-franchisees/

Profitability: https://www.vettedbiz.com/wendys-franchise/

Wendy’s franchise application: https://www.wendys.com/franchising

Wendy’s revenues: https://www.statista.com/statistics/221980/wendy-s-total-revenue/

Failure rate: https://www.vettedbiz.com/franchises/wendys/

Set-up costs: https://www.entrepreneur.com/franchises/directory/wendys/299712

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