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    Quiznos Eyes C-store Channel Growth in 2012

    The restaurant chain plans to open 80 locations in convenience stores and other non-traditional locations.

    DENVER -- One month after getting new owners and a $150-million cash injection, Quiznos is turning its focus toward growing its holdings. On the quick-service restaurant (QSR) chain's 2012 agenda is modest growth with a new, more efficiently built prototype and more support for franchisees, according to a report by Nation's Restaurant News. Specifically, Brian Belmont, Quiznos' chief development officer, said the company plans to open 80 to 100 new domestic units this year, along with another 80 locations in convenience stores and other non-traditional locations. Last year, the chain opened 176 locations, including about 70 convenience store units.

    "We're growing for tomorrow," Belmont said. "I'd be ecstatic if we opened 100 restaurants in 2012.

    Quiznos is also looking to offer more operational field support to its franchisees this year, he said, as well as contribute to a "good, thoughtful" national media campaign.

    With 2,300 U.S. locations and 650 international units, Quiznos has downsized since its peak in 2006, when it had more than 5,100 locations. The QSR operator is looking to jumpstart some growth with a new "next generation" prototype that opened recently in Portland, Ore, according to NRN. The new prototype features subtle décor upgrades, such as warmer colors, wood finishes and a darker millwork set.

    The company has reduced build-out costs to under $175,000, which Belmont said is $25,000 to $50,000 lower than units cost to build in 2010, with the same 1,200- to 1,600-square-foot area.

    The chain is targeting growth in southern California, Texas, Miami, Atlanta, Chicago and along the New York-Boston-Philadelphia corridor.

    "We're going to be more selective about our locations, but also about the type of franchisees we'll be working with," said Sean Fitzgerald, Quiznos' senior vice president of franchise development, adding that Quiznos will look to partner with more multi-unit operators. "We're marrying the right spots with the right operators."

     

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