With nearly one third of the brand’s locations in the Lone Star state, Buffalo Wings & Rings’ strategy to take over the rest of the state is simple—focus on high concentration throughout the areas where they’ve already seen success and continue building their brand northward.
“Texas is really a gem state for us. We’ve had great success in several markets already, and it’s such a large state that the opportunities for further growth are immense,” said Philip Schram, chief development officer for Buffalo Wings & Rings. “At this point Central Texas is a prime focus area for us - with one wildly successful location already in San Antonio and another in Round Rock, we know the communities in this area are highly receptive to the concept and we’re ready to fill out the remaining available territory.”
Buffalo Wings & Rings started in South Texas, and since, then they’ve gradually worked their way North. Already having seen great success in cities like San Antonio, New Braunfels and Round Rock, Schram said the brand has recognized their sweet spot. Just two years after the brand’s coveted South Texas Development Group opened their first location, they had fully developed the Texas Triangle.
Now, due to the success in the South Texas is a territory, Schram and his team hope to mimic the very tactic that helped them establish their first footprint there.
“Our franchisees in South Texas followed all of the systems we have in place with incredible attention to detail and established an impeccable reputation. This area has been paramount to our success,” said Schram. “From this experience, we learned that when there’s a successful location nearby, franchisees are able to feed off of one another’s success in neighboring territories. A reputation is built, people tell their friends and business flows.”
According to Schram, they’re now targeting opportunities in Dallas and Houston as they move north. In Dallas, there’s capacity for more than 100 units, and in Houston, there’s room for more than 50. To make the biggest impact possible in these bigger cities, Schram hopes to utilize the same tactic that brought them success in South Texas—smart strategic growth over rapid and random expansion.
“We started by growing in the mid-sized cities of Texas—there’s immense opportunity there because the state has more than 60 cities that fall under that category—meaning they have 50,000 to 200,000 residents,” Schram said. “As we grow in these cities, we create a strong, concentrated web. More and more people recognize our brand. Once we establish that web, it’s easier for Buffalo Wings & Rings to naturally transition into bigger cities.”
Texas’ culture is also an added advantage for the brand. Texas has long been known for its strong food and family dining culture, and has maintained an unemployment rate lower than the national average indicating both investor and consumer confidence in the state, particularly in larger metropolitan areas.
“It’s a great time to go into business in Texas and when you look at how many other full service restaurant concepts there are, you’ll notice a couple of trends,” said Schram. “First there’s a seemingly endless demand for family dining, and second there’s a gap in the market for sports concepts that offer the same quality food and family-friendly atmosphere that we do.” To learn more about Buffalo Wings & Rings’ development plans, click here.