Chicago & Houston On Tap for Further Fast Casual Expansion
Aloha Poke Co., the nation’s premier fast casual poke restaurant concept, today announced plans to open two new Chicago corporate stores as development of a new Houston, TX franchise location moves forward. The news comes on the heels of strong Q1 and Q2 performance where the brand recorded +13% comparable store sales in the first half of 2022.
The company started in 2016 in a food hall in Chicago’s busy West Loop, offering its customers fast, freshly packed sashimi-grade fish paired with delicious, whole ingredients. With tremendous demand and affinity for the food and brand, Aloha Poke Co. has grown rapidly ever since. The two new Chicago-area stores, in Deerfield and Mt. Prospect, expand Aloha Poke Co.’s hometown footprint to ten stores.
“We are thrilled to continue our expansion in suburban Chicago,” said Chris Birkinshaw, CEO of Aloha Poke Co. “As poke becomes a mainstream category, more and more customers demand a high-quality brand experience. Our repeat business is off the charts, and we’ve heard loud and clear that our customers want us to meet them, wherever they are, with new locations in our existing markets.”
Last year, Aloha Poke Co. announced the development of 11 Houston franchise locations, with first-time franchisees Amanda and Cory Tabb opening a Cypress location in 2021. Baryalay Razi, a multi-brand, multi-unit professional franchisee, planning another ten. Razi’s first store is on track to open this fall in Richmond, TX.
Atlanta and Milwaukee Residents Love Aloha Poke
After a more than twenty-year career in fast casual franchising, Randy Elias joined the Aloha Poke Co. brand in the spring of 2022. Elias’ current holdings include several Moe’s Southwest Grills in the Acworth and Cartersville, GA, communities along with other fast casual ventures. Elias opened his Aloha Poke Co. franchise to improve his portfolio. By adding a brand built around healthier food options, efficient operations, and lower labor requirements, Elias projects a terrific return on his investment.
Aloha Poke Co.’s success in Wisconsin is driven by a joint venture between Aloha Poke Co. corporate and Aloha Wisconsin JV LLC. The first location opened in 2018 in downtown Milwaukee’s historic and hip Third Ward. The concept immediately gained popularity among the local creatives, businesspeople, and visitors. The group’s second location opened in Wauwatosa in 2020 and has thrived by offering best-in-class poke bowls not previously found in the community. The state’s third store opened at the bustling Mequon Public Market in 2021, and the group is currently scouting locations in Madison, WI, for a fourth store.
Like Atlanta’s Elias and Houston’s Razi and Tabb family, many franchisees are pivoting towards cleaner, crave-worthy, and more manageable fast casual concepts. Aloha Poke Co. meets today’s consumer demand for delicious and sustainably-sourced options. Aloha Poke’s franchise development program, FDD transparency promise, and dedicated corporate support system continue to attract professional and first-time entrepreneurs to the poke franchise concept.
Based in Chicago, Aloha Poke Co. operates 19 locations in Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Texas, Florida, Georgia and Washington, D.C. In addition to the brand’s responsibly-sourced menu and simple, efficient operations, franchise restaurant investors are drawn to Aloha Poke Co.’s attractive initial capital requirements, unit economics, and appealing sales-to-investment figures.
Aloha Poke Co. is actively seeking to grow its exciting, health-forward, fast casual concept with qualified entrepreneurs and experienced restaurant franchisees in key growth markets including, Florida, Texas, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, and Tennessee. Ideal Aloha Poke Co. franchisees have restaurant operations or business management experience and share the desire to positively impact the nation’s need for quick, beautiful, sustainable poke bowls.
- More from Aloha Poke Co.