Andy Wiederhorn, CEO of FAT Brands, on brand recovery amid an ongoing pandemic and political unrest

July 10, 2020 00:15:14
Andy Wiederhorn, CEO of FAT Brands, on brand recovery amid an ongoing pandemic and political unrest
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Andy Wiederhorn, CEO of FAT Brands, on brand recovery amid an ongoing pandemic and political unrest
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Hosted By

Holly Petre

Show Notes

FAT Brands — the Beverly Hills, Calif.-based global franchising company known for its flagship brand, Fat Burger, along with five other brands — has fared relatively well in pivoting to off-premise during the COVID-19 lockdowns. But some of the biggest challenges for their company, CEO Andy Wiederhorn tells us, are in creating different strategies for their wide range of brands. Panderosa Steakhouse features buffet-style dining that turned into cafeteria-style, with employees instead of guests serving the food. For Fat Burger, to-go sales rose from 40% to almost 70% over the past few months as the company pivoted to off-premise. Now, as dining rooms begin to reopen, FAT Brands casual-dining brands are performing better than many of their industry counterparts. That relative success, Wiederhorn said, has many causes: “We’re fortunate that the design of our casual dining restaurants incorporated outdoor features and some of the menu items are grab and go items like chicken wings and you don’t need a lot of attended service,” Wiederhorn said. “I also think the alcohol component is real. People want a break and want to get out, sit outside and they can have finger food themselves that’s not being passed around by other people. And we’re right now at least 25% alcohol [sales] right now.” In our podcast, Wiederhorn continues to discuss the added challenges of reopening in states where the number of COVID-19 cases is going back up, as well as how he aided franchisees during the nation’s time of political unrest in June.

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