When it comes to opening a restaurant, it’s a cutthroat industry with lots of competition, rules and regulations – and a lot of people-pleasing. Coming up with unique dishes that will taste amazing and will guarantee a large, regular customer base is a challenging endeavor. Plus, trying to stay above water and make a profit with one restaurant is quite an adventure. However, if the culinary cards are played right, there’s an opportunity to turn your family restaurant business into a chain; a recognized name, operating in several locations. That is, in fact, how most of the world’s most popular restaurants began.
It’s a common lament the world over – but particularly from our European friends – that the world is becoming ‘Americanised’, and it’s true that many of the most popular chain restaurants to hit international expansion are US-based. It seems that the world has embraced the American cuisine – even when they’re trying to pull off Asian dishes or Ozzy cuisine. It might be a surprise to some of our readers that some of the most popular American chain restaurants have a strong presence in the Middle East and Latin America, so should you be an American seeking a “taste of home” while you’re traveling internationally, your national favourites are never too far away. Or if you’re from another country and wondering what the Americans are eating nowadays, you can likely find out first-hand by popping into a local chain diner. Of course, given how delicious some of these foods are, it’s no surprise that the restaurants are so popular – or that the Americans are so morbidly obese.
When people think of popular chain restaurants, they might think of fast food chains like McDonald’s or Subway, but those fast food restaurants are now such banal multinational conglomerates that we didn’t see fit to put them on the list. Instead, we’ve compiled a list of the ten most popular chain restaurants – restaurants where you sit down and dine over delicious food, rather than through a drive-thru or a takeaway service. Some of the restaurants on the list may surprise you, as it proves there’s apparently no such thing as a country immune to Americanisation – at least when it comes to the U.S. conquering the international dining industry.
10. P.F. Chang’s – $942.6 Million
P.F. Chang’s has a value of $4.48 million per restaurant location around the world – including the Middle East, Canada, South America, and the Philippines. The restaurant was founded in 1993 with the first location opening in Scottsdale, Arizona. As of July 2012, the chain was no longer publicly held as Centerbridge Partners purchased the chain in a $1.1 billion dollar deal. The restaurant specializes in Chinese-American dishes and owns the chain franchise, Pei-Wei. In the United States alone, P.F. Chang’s has made over $924 million in sales and is one of the largest Asian-themed culinary establishments.