Golden Corral Cooks Up Record Sales

Immediate Release:
Media contact: Sue Yannello 919.459.8162
Kevin Behan 919.459.3595

Golden Corral’s Success Drives Franchise Growth
Customers love food; investors love stable, experienced leadership

(February 2015) Raleigh, N.C. – Golden Corral®, the nation’s largest grill-buffet chain, continued its growth in 2014 and is on track to open more new stores than all of its direct competitors combined. Between franchised and company stores, 14 new Golden Corrals opened in 10 different states in 2014, representing a significant capital investment in the brand.

Golden Corral now has 500 restaurants operating in 41 states. In 2015, the company will add 20 new locations, including restaurants that have already opened this year in Richmond, Ky., Christiansburg, Va. and Bellflower, Calif.

Company leaders attribute the growth in sales to continued food innovation, strict adherence to its founding mission of making pleasurable dining affordable®, and Golden Corral’s famous best-in-class food offering and value pricing. In addition, Golden Corral’s relationship with more than 40 of the nation’s leading lenders make financing a smooth transaction because they recognize the brand’s longevity and stability.

“Golden Corral’s continued growth is a result of the stability of the brand and the company’s commitment to bringing innovation to our restaurants,” says Bob McDevitt, Golden Corral’s Senior Vice President of Franchise Development. “We’re testing a Mongolian grill where fresh meats and vegetables are cooked to order, and we’re featuring our new Lenten seafood promotion with fish tacos, salmon and larger shrimp. Our customers love the new additions while savoring the traditional favorites at an affordable price.”

Recipe for Golden Corral Success:

• Franchise Sales Growth: The company was established in 1973 and has 40 years of proven success that continued in 2014. Golden Corral is the largest grill-buffet chain with more new store openings last year than all of their direct competitors combined.

• Consistent Leadership: In January, Golden Corral named Lance Trenary as the third CEO in the company’s 43 years. Trenary moved up the ranks at Golden Corral over the past 29 years, most recently serving as the company’s Chief Operating Officer. Additionally, the average tenure of senior management is 18 years. This level of experience and stability with the brand leads to the company’s continued success.

• Long Standing Financing Relationships: In a tight lending environment, the company has an advantage due to relationships with more than 40 of the nation’s leading lenders who make financing a smooth transaction.

• Recognition as a Leading Concept and Business Opportunity:

• No. 1 in the Buffet Restaurant Category in 2011-2014 by Entrepreneur Magazine
• No. 1 Consumer’s Choice in Cafeteria/Buffet Chains by Restaurants & Institutions
• No. 1 Grill Buffet Segment by Nation’s Restaurant News for 14 years


About Golden Corral:

Golden Corral, based in Raleigh, N.C., is the nation’s largest grill-buffet restaurant chain with 500 restaurants operating in 41 states as of January 1, 2015. Seventy-five percent of the restaurants are operated by franchisees. Golden Corral is famous for its variety, with most restaurants carrying 160 innovative and delicious food choices including USDA steaks cooked to order, rotisserie chicken, awesome pot roast and desserts like homemade carrot cake and the Chocolate Wonderfall®.

The company has received numerous awards and distinctions including: No. 1 in the Buffet Restaurant Category three years in a row in Entrepreneur Magazine’s prestigious Franchise 500 Ranking, No. 1 in the Grill-Buffet segment for 14 years by Nation’s Restaurant News, named ALLStar Franchise in 2010 by ALLBusiness and in 2009 Restaurants & Institutions ranked Golden Corral No. 1 in Consumer’s Choice in cafeteria/buffet chains.

Golden Corral’s first restaurant opened in 1973 in Fayetteville, N.C., as a family steakhouse. In the mid-’80s, guests’ requests for additional entrees and an expanded salad bar prompted the company to reinvent itself by introducing the 400-seat “Buffet and Grill.”


Kevin Behan