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  • Writer's pictureSarah Barker

Learn More About Owning A MOOYAH Franchise

Updated: Feb 12, 2020

Interested in owning a restaurant? Read our Q&A with Franchise Developer Charlotte Wagner and their Burgers, Fries & Shakes is a fast-casual restaurant opportunity!

MOOYAH Burgers, Fries & Shakes is a fast-casual, “better burger” concept offering mouthwatering made-to-order burgers, lifestyle burgers, hand-cut French fries, and real ice cream shakes. Founded in 2007, the Plano, Texas-based company takes the type of burger you'd enjoy in a fine-dining establishment and serves it in a fun, family-friendly environment!

Want to know our secret recipe for all this success? Let's start with our simple menu, seasoned with a strong focus on food quality, and topped with our seriously FUN brand personality. Throw in an industry-leading franchise support program, and you’ll start to realize why our unit economics are strong, and more importantly, why MOOYAH Franchise Owners have fun running their businesses!

10 Questions with Charlotte

1. How did the franchise get started and what is the background of your executives?

MOOYAH Burgers, Fries, & Shakes was founded in Plano, TX in 2007. Like most great concepts, MOOYAH began as a dream. Founders Rich Hicks and Todd Istre looked out on the landscape of burger restaurants and recognized an area of opportunity and a competitive edge they could seize: combining quality with fun. Together, they honed in on achieving craveable burgers, fries & shakes that would keep Guests coming back for more.

Sometimes, you’ve got to run before you can walk. The MOOYAH team knew they wanted to franchise from Day One, so they brought on their first Franchise Owner before they even developed their menu! Building the MOOYAH concept from the ground up alongside the first Owner not only showed the Founders’ commitment to the success of their partners, but it also meant developing scalable systems and processes from the start, minimizing frustration and potentially costly changes down the road. On top of that, it set the stage for MOOYAH’s values of treating Owners and the corporate team like family.

10 years later, MOOYAH was acquired by a private equity, injecting a significant amount of capital into the brand to invest in areas such as operational support, marketing, technology, and research analytics, with the primary objective of creating one of the best franchise support systems in the world. As a result, we are now well-positioned to significantly increase our market share in this industry, all while helping partners achieve new levels of success in their markets.

2. What sets you apart from your competitors?

  • Ridiculiciously Good Food: The average consumer these days is looking for a higher quality product than in years past, and MOOYAH delivers on that promise. We provide, with love, Never-Frozen, 100% Certified Angus BeefⓇ, all-natural Turkey, black bean veggie burgers, and all-beef hot dogs served on fresh potato and multigrain buns. Our hand-cut fries are made from Idaho Potatoes in a 6-step, 24-hour process and served with premium sauces, and our shakes are made using100% real ice cream.

  • Lifestyle Options: Other burger franchises may tell customers they can “have it their way,” but MOOYAH really means it! Unlike many of our competitors, we offer Lifestyle Burger options to fit the needs of customers with special dietary requests. We offer Keto, Paleo, Vegetarian, and Low Carb friendly burgers, as well as gluten-free buns. There really is something for everyone!

  • Advanced Technology: MOOYAH was an early adopter of new technology and has a strong focus on providing technological solutions for both franchise partners and our Guests. Guests can enjoy the MOOYAH rewards app, which is fully integrated into MOOYAH’s online ordering and POS system, allowing for custom communications and strong consumer insights. Our digital on-screen ordering system inside the restaurant makes ordering easier than ever before, and for additional convenience, we are partnered with multiple third-party delivery apps such as DoorDash, Grubhub, UberEATS. These apps bring in $3.1 million per year, currently represent 5.5% of total sales, and we are aiming for a 10% year over year increase over the next 3 years.

Restaurants Designed with Personality: Our sleek new restaurant design is bright, inviting, and family-friendly. Featuring comfortable booths, moveable community tables for getting social, patio seating for perfect weather days, MOOYAH consistently provides a fun atmosphere for kids and kids-at-heart. In keeping up with consumer demand, we have a designated area with shelving that will hold pick-up and to-go orders as well as a dedicated bench for Guests to sit as they wait for their order. Our in-store marketing strategies and creative, hand-drawn wallpaper effectively reflect our fun brand persona while delivering an elevated burger experience.

3. What are you goals for the MOOYAH in the next 5 years?

Our President, Tony Darden has rolled out a plan for “100 MOOYAH Millionaires,” a corporate initiative to help Franchise Owners reach one million dollars in sales. We are also in the process of redesigning all of our restaurants with a fresh, new, modern look to improve the in-restaurant experience for both our Guests and Team Members. We would like to continue to maximize the support we are providing current Owners while bringing on new ones to expand the brand into new markets and territories.

4. What is the best thing about being a part of MOOYAH?

  • Expert Leadership Support: MOOYAH is guided by a growing and committed leadership team with decades of experience whose primary focus is on improving operations and support for our Franchise Owners. In addition to the 150 years of restaurant experience in our Executive team, both our Chairman of the Board and our President have been Franchise Owners of multiple brands, so they truly understand the benefit of ongoing support. Our leadership team is always just a phone call away!

  • Community Philanthropy: While many better burger brands have a “city feel” and cater to urban residents, MOOYAH puts its roots in suburban communities, partnering with schools, churches, sports leagues, and other groups to ensure our restaurants are a welcoming environment for all. For example, our Madison, WI location is the go-to spot after Badger football games at the University of Wisconsin. They even offer their own Badger Burger, which has become a Guest favorite!

  • Lower Risk/Higher Reward: At MOOYAH, we have a streamlined kitchen with a core menu consisting of three main products: burgers, fries & shakes. That’s it! Our simple menu allows for lower build-out and food costs compared to many of our competitors. For example, BurgerFi, SmashBurger, and Sonic Burger’s initial investment costs range from almost $1 million to over $3.5 million! At MOOYAH, we understand that lower build-out costs mean faster ROIs, which is why our initial investment starts at $403,000, without restricting our ability to create high-quality, beautiful and fun restaurants. Not to mention, the top 25% of our Franchise Owners average $1,148,462 annually. Cha-CHING!

  • Seriously Fun: At MOOYAH, we believe having high-quality food doesn’t require you to have a low-quality personality. We’re on a mission to make sure customers, Team Members, and Franchise Owners have the most fun ever!...and yet, we couldn’t be more serious about the food we serve. Put simply, we believe that making seriously good food doesn’t have to be such serious business.

5. Can you describe a typical day of a franchise owner?


Our Owner-Operators are involved in the daily operations of the business, including the task of developing and managing team members and fostering community relations. An Owner-Operator will also be in charge of the following tasks:

  • Review sales reports, P&L’s, Guest satisfaction scores and Guest reviews

  • Prepare feedback for General Manager and team leads to share with team members

  • Conduct site visits to ensure the appearance and cleanliness of the restaurant

  • Observe restaurant operations to ensure consistency and quality

  • Assist with teaching and re-training as needed

  • Manage the books and payroll, or educate/assist a GM with this process

  • Analyze business to identify local marketing opportunities, and implement new initiatives

  • Oversee inventory of food and supplies, ordering products as needed

  • Motivate team members and lead by example


A Semi-Absentee Franchise Owner is expected to spend time overseeing the operations of their location(s) daily by visiting the restaurant and talking with their General Manager. This will help to ensure the compliance and high-level execution of our company values.

More specifically they will ensure excellence through the following regular activities:

  • Consistent daily contact with the General Manager

  • Weekly walkthroughs to ensure the appearance and cleanliness standards are met

  • Addressing staff needs through the performance and results of the management team

  • Regular financial and payroll audits

6. Can you describe an ideal owner for MOOYAH.

At MOOYAH, we like our partners to love burgers, fries, and shakes; They can’t live without ‘em. They should also share our vision for providing an industry-leading product and understand the importance that exceptional service plays in a businesses' success. We want to partner with Franchise Owners who are hungry to succeed, grow into multiple locations, become leaders in their communities and who will take pride in playing their part in building the biggest, best (and most fun!) brand of its kind.

Having experience in restaurants, food service, or retail is an advantage, but not essential to being approved as a new MOOYAH Franchise Owner. However, a passion for high-quality food and excellent customer service is!

Here are some specific traits we look for:

  • Hospitality Gene They genuinely like people and people like them. They get pleasure out of serving their Guests, their employees, and their communities. They are family-oriented and want to provide a welcome environment for all.

  • Growth and Business Minded They have worked in the corporate world or owned their own business and know how to manage a budget, maintain a P&L, and manage inventory and costs to maximize profitability. They have a long term strategy for growth.

  • Leadership Skills They know how to motivate, engage, and manage a team, often coming from prior business experience, military training or athletic/coaching backgrounds

  • Problem-Solver They are nimble and think quickly while on their feet and on the go. They find solutions to problems quickly and efficiently to ensure a highly satisfactory experience for everyone, no matter the size or scope of the problem.

  • Passionate & FUN They are passionate about our products, our experience, their team members, and Guests. They really do have to love burgers, fries & shakes and everything the brand stands for to be truly successful, and most importantly, they want to have fun in everything they do.

7. Tell us a little about MOOYAH support and training program.

New Franchise Owner and General Manager training takes place over two weeks in Dallas, TX. Over the training period, we provide 23 hours of classroom training and 134 hours of on-the-job training. The training will cover the MOOYAH culture, food safety and preparation, the Guest experience, marketing, purchasing and production, POS, data management systems, and everything needed to ensure the operational success of new Franchise Owners.

Following Initial Training, we host weekly calls to ensure new Owners are running their business with confidence and provide two weeks of on-site training at the time of their opening. We will continue to provide training programs for all new initiatives, as well as ongoing certification for new and existing Team Members. Our weekly MOO Mail sent to Owners includes important updates on upcoming programs, reviews, sales numbers, and links to our weekly Public Service Announcements.

We have two Franchise Operations Managers and one Franchise Operations Director that visit stores on a minimum of a quarterly basis or more, where they focus on brand standards, facility maintenance, and restaurant economic performance. The primary function of an FOM/FOD is to ensure the realization of the franchise partner’s financial goals while ensuring brand initiatives and strategies are being fulfilled. Operations support personnel are the partners of the Owner while simultaneously advocating the guest experience.

We provide comprehensive digital, social, and traditional marketing solutions. We have 2% national ad fund and a local marketing fund of 1% that is paid weekly. Each Franchise Owner is provided a dedicated Local Store Marketing Specialist for their territory, all covered by the marketing royalty at no additional expense to the Franchise Owner. They will also have a dedicated in-house Graphic Designer to create custom marketing collateral. We even use 30% of the marketing royalty to put back into the Franchise Owner’s local store marketing use!

8. What is the total investment for MOOYAH?

$402,750 - $564,400

9. Do I have to own a brick and mortar location? If so, can you tell us a little about that.

Yes. Our average footprint is between 1,800-2,400 square feet with an average seating capacity of 65 seats, 30-40 parking spaces, and 2 parking spots for take-out Guests. We just announced our brand new restaurant redesign with a separate door for takeout orders, community tables, digital menus, and more!

Our ideal location is on an endcap in a family-centric, destination, with high daytime foot traffic, such as a shopping center with a strong anchor and other retail/food co-tenants. We find that MOOYAH locations thrive in suburban communities of larger families with above-average income, and in close proximity to schools, churches, and parks/recreation facilities.

10. How much can I make owning a MOOYAH?

Per our 2019 FDD, Our top 25% of Franchise Owners grossed $1,148,462 in 2018.


Interested in learning more about this opportunity? Contact us below.

SSB Franchise Consulting offers one-stop shopping when you are searching for a business to call your own. We help you save time by working with you to learn your likes and dislikes and style of doing business then matching you with prospective Franchisors at no cost to you. To read more on if we're a good fit go to 208.724.1731

Ready to get started? Schedule your free consultation today!

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