Operations

Potbelly signs deal to expand in Seattle-Tacoma market

This latest move in a series of deals will refranchise nine corporate locations and add another 13 new franchised units to Washington state.
Potbelly restaurant
Potbelly has been pushing refranchising as part of the franchise agreements. | Photo: Shutterstock.

Potbelly on Wednesday said it has signed on for another franchise deal, this time in the Seattle-Tacoma area of Washington state.

Franchise operator Sound Sandwich LLC has agreed to take ownership of nine existing company units, and to develop another 13 in the area over the next eight years.

“This is a market that performs well but is significantly underpenetrated right now,” said Potbelly President and CEO Bob Wright, in a statement. “We see tremendous whitespace for our brand and look forward to supporting our franchisee as they open the doors to new shops in the years ahead.”

The deal is the latest in a series announced this year as part of the Chicago-based chain’s Franchise Growth Acceleration Initiative, which includes a long-term goal of reaching 2,000 units, of which at least 85% will be franchised.

Currently, the chain includes about 430 shops, of which 69 are franchised.

Earlier this year, Potbelly founder Bryant Keil and his son signed on to operate 27 units in Maryland, including the refranchising of 12 company-owned units and the development of another 15.

In October, Potbelly announced another 40-unit deal in Ohio and Florida with Royal Restaurant Group, which also included the refranchising of four units in Ohio.

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