How bb.q Chicken maintains consistency amid rapid expansion
June 13, 2023
With more than 2,000 locations in South Korea, our Korean Fried Chicken franchise, bb.q Chicken, is bringing mouth-watering light and crispy Korean Fried Chicken across the country with our rapid national expansion. I have been with bb.q Chicken for more than 13 years, rising from an Operations Team Leader to U.S. CEO, solidifying the franchise in the United States. In 2022, bb.q (pronounced bee-bee-que) saw an incredible 43.18% YOY unit growth, and we’re full steam ahead on expanding.
At bb.q, we take pride in ensuring that our fried chicken in Seoul tastes exactly the same as it does at any other location in the world. However, with rapid growth comes the challenges of re-creating authentic and consistent dining experiences across our growing U.S. footprint. For those with similar challenges, we’ve identified key factors that bb.q implements to ensure the success of our franchisees while also pushing to grow our bb.q family with more restaurant locations.
Authenticity and consistency
Authenticity and consistency are extremely valued at bb.q. Korean Fried Chicken and Korean culture have both gained tremendous popularity and interest in America and while many international food brands try to Americanize their food selections when they franchise in the United States, that is not the case for us.
In order to maintain consistency, we have also established Chicken University in South Korea, founded in 1999 as a dedicated facility for research and development and franchisee education. Chicken University equips franchisees with the knowledge and tools they need to deliver consistent dining experiences to customers across all locations. We strongly value education here at bb.q, as we believe it provides the greatest foundation for our franchisees to succeed.
Our bb.q family
We often refer to all of our franchisees as a bb.q family. We’re proud to say we have a large family, as 99% of our system is franchise-owned. We value each and every one of our franchisees, which is why we’ve strategically developed a strong support system for new and current franchisees. We have an extensive three-week New Store Opening training program that we implement when franchisees sign on with us. Before every grand opening, we send out our marketing team to ensure the soft opening and grand opening go smoothly. We even send our corporate chefs to help train the employees how to properly prepare our Korean Fried Chicken and other authentic K-Food recipes. Bb.q has also heavily invested in our brand website, online ordering and social media to help drive orders and traffic to all locations.
We also have three restaurant concepts that we offer to our franchisees, as we know that depending on the location or market, different concepts might thrive better than others. We recently positioned ourselves at the forefront of innovation in the restaurant industry as we launched our first-ever tech-forward Smart Kitchen Model, named BSK, featuring little to no human interaction and touchless food lockers. The concept is the newest extension to our existing portfolio of three restaurant formats that our franchisees have the freedom to choose from: bb.q Chicken Express, bb.q Chicken Café and bb.q Chicken and Beer.
We’re constantly working with our franchisees to better understand how we can all learn and grow together as a bb.q family, and we recently launched a new franchise development campaign to recruit more potential franchisees in several new states as we grow our footprint across the country. As we expand, we continue to remain authentic and consistent through our brand and our franchisees. We have a saying at bb.q that the franchise thrives when the franchisee thrives, and everything we do and implement is based around this core philosophy.