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FDD Talk 2016: The MOOYAH Franchise Opportunity (Financial Performance Analysis, Estimated Costs, and Other Important Stuff You Need to Know)

by Franchise Chatter on August 22, 2016

in FDD Talk 2017: Food Franchises, Franchise Earnings, Hamburger Franchise

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MOOYAH Burgers, Fries, & Shakes Photo by Simon Miller

In this FDD Talk 2016 post, you’ll learn the following:

  • Section I – Background information on the MOOYAH franchise opportunity, including relevant news updates
  • Section II – Estimated initial investment for a MOOYAH franchise, based on Item 7 of the company’s 2016 FDD
  • Section III – Presentation and analysis of MOOYAH’s financial performance representations, based on Item 19 of the company’s 2016 FDD, including information on the:
  • average annual and weekly gross sales from March 5, 2015 through March 6, 2016 (the “Measurement Period”) for the top 10%, top 25%, top 50%, top 75%, and all 53 franchised traditional MOOYAH Restaurants that operated for the full 52-week Measurement Period

Section I – Background Information

The two guys who came together to start MOOYAH were both restaurant veterans: Rich Hicks (founder of Tin Star) and Todd Istre (founder of Boudreaux’s Cajun Kitchen and Taters Kountry Kitchen). In 2007 they launched MOOYAH to compete in the better burger movement and started franchising that same year.

The chain has been growing steadily since its founding and now has 94 locations, four of which are company-owned and 14 of which are located outside the U.S. Headquartered in Plano TX, here’s how MOOYAH keeps the fries fried and the shakes shaken in the competitive fast-casual restaurant industry:

The Menu

MOOYAH takes the multi-step approach to ordering. First you pick your patty:  MOOYAH, double, turkey patty, or black bean veggie patty. Then you decide what kind of bun you want on it (fresh-baked artisan white, multigrain wheat, or lettuce wrap). After that you select your extras, such as cheese (American, Swiss, cheddar, blue, pepperjack), applewood bacon, and avocado.

Then you can load it up for free with the following items: lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, relish, jalapeños, onion, grilled onions, fried onion strings, sautéed mushrooms, and your choice of sauces – MOOYAH sauce, Heinz ketchup, Cholula mustard, mayo, BBQ, A-1, Redhot Buffalo, ranch, spicy ranch, or honey mustard.

The menu is rounded out with fresh-cut French fries and sweet potato fries, a couple of salads, and ten different milkshakes made with real ice cream.

Better Burger?

It seems like “better burger” chains have been springing up like weeds over the last decade. Most of them make some attempt at explaining what it is that actually sets them apart from the rest of the better burger segment.

The interesting thing about MOOYAH is that they make no attempt at explanation – there’s no heart-felt story from the founders about why they launched the business or anything like that. One franchisee is quoted on the website saying, “Everybody can sell a burger, but not everybody can sell the same experience we are able to at MOOYAH.” That’s fine, but there’s nothing to indicate what that experience might be.

If you read the reviews of this chain online, you’ll find it doesn’t really distinguish itself in the better burger movement.

The other strange thing is that the “in the news” page of the site doesn’t have anything recent on it, which is always a red flag. Surely the chain has been in the news since February 2013, right? Not according to its own website.


The chain seems very focused on offering itself up as a fundraising opportunity. Organizations can sign up for daily slots from 4pm-10pm where the group gets a percentage of sales generated by the organization – 15% for up to $1,000 in sales, 20% for $1,001-$2,000, and 25% for $2,001 and more.

If you’re in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, the company has a MOOYAH Cookout Trailer that can be used for special events.

Section II – Estimated Costs

  • Please click here for detailed estimates of MOOYAH franchise costs, based on Item 7 of the company’s 2016 FDD (updated).

Section III – Financial Performance Representations (Item 19, 2016 FDD) and Analysis

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