Restaurant company adding locations
A local restaurant company plans to build new locations this year and make changes to existing sites across its footprint.
Grand Rapids-based Meritage Hospitality Group said this month it plans to “continue its capital investment program in 2018” with the modernization of certain Wendy’s fast-food restaurants in its portfolio and addition of more Wendy's locations.
“We are set up for a significant growth year in 2018 with momentum in acquisitions, renovations and new construction,” said Robert Schermer Jr., CEO, Meritage.
The 40-store plan includes building new locations and rebuilding, relocating and renovating several existing restaurants.
Weston Persons, a brand marketing manager at Meritage, further explained the types of projects under the plan: “scrapes” or rebuilding projects; relocations or moving an existing franchise to a nearby address; “refreshes” or renovations; and completely new builds.
Changes are planned in Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, Michigan, Virginia, Connecticut and Oklahoma.
At this point, Meritage plans 11 new builds, four relocations, four rebuilds and 13 renovations.
This includes a completely new location in Hudsonville, slated for completion in July, a rebuild in Grand Rapids, also scheduled to be finished in July, and a relocation in Grand Rapids, slated for August.
Persons said some of the projects in the capital investment plan have not been determined, and details of the current announcement might change based on permitting and other factors.
Meritage Hospitality Group operates 309 restaurants in multiple states: Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.
It has about 9,400 employees.
It operates restaurants under several brands: Wendy’s; Twisted Rooster; the Crooked Goose, which will soon be converted to Taco Vista; Freighters Eatery & Taproom; and Wheelhouse.
Meritage reported 2017 sales of $312.6 million, up from $235.8 million in 2016, an increase of 32.6 percent.