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Honest Abe vs. Chick-Fil-A - Let the Battle Begin!

Updated: Nov 23, 2021

Chick-Fil-A is one of the best known names in franchising, and they have a business model that is very unique to the franchise world. For starters, they are closed on Sundays (14.2% of the year). For perspective, compare that to McDonald's which requires their franchisees to be open 24/7/365! Secondly, they are unabashed purveyors of the Christian faith. This alone makes them stand out, since it's typical of corporate America to steer away from making public stances on "controversial" topics, such as religion.

Last year, over 60,000 people applied to open a Chick-fil-a! 60,000! And they only awarded 120! So, why is the demand so high? According to their website:

" Our franchised Operators are the backbone of the Chick-fil-A chain. Chick-fil-A, Inc. stands ready to support each franchisee and to honor our heritage by fostering their dreams. Taking that commitment seriously, we are looking for long-term partners who are a good fit–and we know our Operators are, too. "

So, is the term "partner" applicable when describing the relationship between Chick-Fil-A and the franchisee? Honest Abe vs. Chick-Fil-A... Who will emerge victorious?

The Numbers - Startup costs for Honest Abe Roofing are typically lower than those of the franchise systems reviewed, but not in this case. The franchise fee for Chick-fil-A is only $10,000! Compare that to the $35,000 Franchise Fee that Honest Abe Roofing has and Chick-fil-A jumps out to an early lead. Chick-fil-A's total cost of opening ends with the franchise fee! the franchisee will not spend another dime of their own money before opening. - Royalty fees are a bit complicated. Chick-fil-a does not really charge any royalties. The royalty fee for Honest Abe is only 7%, which is low compared to other systems, but it's still higher than the 0% that Chick-fil-a has. Chick-fil-a is extending it's lead! *[But wait! Chick-fil-A may not charge a royalty, but they do get their money! The structure is set up so they get all of the money from purchases of the franchise and they split the net profits with the franchisee] - Item 19 of the Chick-fil-A Franchise Disclosure Document states that in 2017 the average location did $5.2 million in gross sales. Compare that to the $8.1 million that Honest Abe Roofing reports in Item 19 of our F.D.D. and you have a clear winner in the revenue category. - It's neck and neck. We'll have to look at differences between the business models themselves to determine a winner here. Business Differences - Chick - fil-A - As a franchisee you will be expected to work in the business daily. And, by work, they mean WORK. You're expected to help the kitchen staff during the lunch rush and keep the books, hire employees and make sure the bathrooms are clean. You are also prohibited - in most cases - from owning any other businesses during your time as a Chick-fil-a franchisee.

- Honest Abe Roofing - You will be overseeing the business, finding and retaining subcontractors to do the physical labor, working with your Honest Abe Roofing Marketing Team to make sure the leads are coming in, assembling a winning sales team, and building wealth. There is no clear winner in this section. It all comes down to personal preference. Do you want to own a business? Or, do you want to own a "job"? And, a fast food job at that... The choice is yours. (See below for a picture of your future as a chick-fil-a franchisee)


Chick-fil-A- Their marketing has had a lot to do with their expansive growth. Who doesn't love the cows telling us to "eat more Chikin"? They do a great job promoting their brand and growing their franchised locations. The question is though, does their ability to generate business for themselves benefit the franchisee? Read more to find out.

Honest Abe Roofing - We also have a very robust marketing plan. We run regional campaigns on social media and work with you to plan your local marketing. Depending on the market you are in we will utilize TV, radio, digital advertising, and anything else that we believe will help bring you leads. We have hundreds of commercials to choose from, most of which include a call to action tag at the end. Our advertising has won regional awards. See below for a compilation of a few examples from the last decade.

The Winner? It's a push so far. Both companies do tremendous jobs at marketing. This race is still too close to call.


Both Franchise systems are great, but they are great in very different ways.

Honest Abe Roofing - As a franchisee, you truly are a business owner. You will have a direct impact on your income level. With our help, you will be able to have the opportunity to create huge wealth for yourself and your team members. We have the track record to prove it. You will have all the tools and training systems to build an empire in your territory.

Chick-fil-A - Words are important. If you noticed, in the paragraph above taken from the Chick-fil-A website refers to their "franchisees" as "operators". Why is that? Why not just "franchisees". Well, it's because of the way their Franchise Agreement is written. Franchisees really are operators, that's it! And, what's another word for "operator"? It's "manager".


Why did we give the win to Honest Abe? Because, this isn't even an Apples-to-apples comparison. We said earlier, with Chick-fil-a, you're buying a job! Nothing more, nothing less. A top performing locations operator can expect to earn roughly $100,000 per year. That's not peanuts, but we think if you're going to put that much effort in to growing a business, you should be compensated higher than that. Especially considering that you have NO EQUITY in the business at all! But again, the choice is yours.

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