The Great Greek Mediterranean Grill has announced it will be opening new locations in Texas, Colorado, and Florida. To date, the fast-casual restaurant franchise has sold more than 15 locations throughout the United States, and others are under development. The Great Greek brand is part of United Franchise Group (UFG), The Global Leader for Entrepreneurs, headquartered in West Palm Beach, Florida.
“The rate of expansion for The Great Greek has been excellent. This year, we will be opening locations in Westminster, Colorado; Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; and Port St. Lucie, Florida,” said Scott Stuck, President of The Great Greek. “In the near future, several locations in the Texas market will also be finalized.”
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We pride ourselves on freshness, quality, and forward-thinking. The Great Greek Mediterranean Grill knows good food and good business. Your most critical decision is perhaps the first question of the franchise process: what’s the best investment? There are plenty of successful independently-owned family restaurants, quick-service chains, and sit-down restaurant franchises. Which one best fits your time, resources and personality?
There’s nothing like a family-owned restaurant steeped in history, culture, and unique culinary treasures. Owners pride themselves on making important decisions — big or small. From deciding on the ideal location, which items will be on the menu or whether grandma’s special sauce needs a little extra salt, the independent owner has total control.
They also have total responsibility. Unlike a Great Greek franchise restaurant, each ingredient in the recipe of franchise success weighs heavily — and squarely — on the shoulders of an independent operator. With a proven operational process, The Great Greek takes the guessing out of selecting the best location, marketing strategy, and day-to-day operations of the restaurant business. Additionally, The Great Greek is a combination of a family-owned restaurant and thriving franchise. The brand got its start as a popular Greek-Armenian family-owned restaurant in Henderson, Nevada. Then co-founders Nick Anthony Della Penna and Trent Jones bought the restaurant, expanding its customer base with two new locations. Their entrepreneurial spirit and desire to share The Great Greek experience nationwide and globally led them to start a franchising chain.
“We provide good food and amazing service,” says Della Penna. “All you have to do is get people in the door — just once! Our proven product and quality customer service will take care of the rest.”
Della Penna and his partner Trent Jones are all too familiar with the challenges of a restaurant startup. Combined, they have more than 30 years of restaurant experience, which is why The Great Greek business model is the ideal franchise for an owner with good business sense and zero restaurant experience.
Quick Service Restaurants vs. Fast-Casual Restaurant
Relaxed dining in a vibrant, family-friendly atmosphere has proven to be a successful restaurant trend. The Great Greek business model emphasizes convenience, affordability and likability. The food is fast but not so quick that it compromises quality. Each dish is prepared-to-order for the freshest experience.
“Some restaurants make the ‘fresh’ claim, but what we consider fresh is lettuce that’s chopped right before it hits your plate,” explains Della Penna. “We don’t prep four days in advance; we prep for the meal you’ve ordered. In the fast-casual segment, that makes The Great Greek unique. I think it’s an amazing concept that will quickly become the worldwide leader in fast-casual Greek food.”
The Great Greek makes its own sauces from scratch, ensuring a quality product that tastes great and offers customers a healthier alternative to quick service food chains. So, it still tastes like grandma’s special sauce — only served at our family dinner table instead of yours.
Every day, a dedicated team helps you serve a delicious, healthy alternative to fast food in a casual, family-friendly environment where food lovers linger while enjoying authentic Greek cuisine made with the freshest ingredients. If that sounds like a franchising dream come true, then The Great Greek Mediterranean Grill is for you.
The Bonus of Business Experience
Co-founders Nick Anthony Della Penna and Trent Jones have more than 30 years of restaurant experience, but it’s not the only ingredient in their recipe for a successful franchise. The Great Greek is a restaurant chain with a proven track record and the perfect fit for a franchisee with business savvy.
“As a franchisee, you’re buying the restaurant experience: the menu, the proven model. You don’t have to be a restauranteur, that’s what we’re giving you,” explained Della Penna. “We’re taking the guesswork out if it. You don’t have to develop recipes, we’ve done that for you. An owner’s priority is hiring quality management, and with our business model, you can do this and still enjoy an impressive profit margin.”
Della Penna and Jones can appreciate the early challenges inherent of a startup. After their initial purchase of The Great Greek, they had a modest marketing plan and relied on a small sample of customer feedback. Today, the restaurant chain boasts three locations with a strategic marketing plan, including a comprehensive survey of the customer experience.
A Taste of Greek
What if Greek food doesn’t appeal to your palate? No problem. Owners need only an appreciation of delicious meals designed for the health-conscious customer. The Mediterranean cuisine is considered one of the healthiest diets in the world. The Great Greek builds upon this tasty, heart-healthy food tradition with fresh ingredients and perfected family recipes.
“We’re eating better as a nation,” said Della Penna. “When you can provide a healthy product in a reasonable timeframe, people will choose your restaurant over a fast food fix any day of the week.”
From the popular gyro to a falafel pita, The Great Greek offers an affordable, appetizing menu of healthy options that can help patrons watch their waistlines and their wallets. In addition to the in-store dining experience, each location offers a healthy catering option — that’s two revenue streams. As an owner, you can gain a loyal clientele by catering corporate events, private parties, and major community fundraisers for Greek food lovers in the private and public sectors.
When franchisees join The Great Greek family, they’re joining an operational process with ongoing support beyond their grand opening. After you open the doors of your new store, we’re here to answer questions and offer valuable insight to keep you on track or ahead of your goals. With a nose for business and the aroma of great food, you don’t have to picture a successful restaurant; we’ll give you the keys to your fast-casual dining masterpiece.
Like many great stories, this one begins at a party.
It all started the night before Nick Anthony Della Penna began his new job as Vice President of Food and Beverage at Excalibur Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Along with this major step in his career, Nick was celebrating another milestone — his 50th birthday. Family and friends gathered in his honor; among them was Nick’s neighbor, Trent Jones. Trent spent his career working in real estate and small business ownership, and he was anxious to try something new. It was at this party that Trent first asked Nick if the successful casino businessman had ever considered owning a restaurant. Nick had not… but within a year, the two neighbors would become business partners.
“I had 20 years in the casino industry, and I was ready for something new,” says Nick. “I thought Trent would be a good partner and we took it from there.”
The pair discovered The Great Greek Mediterranean Grill — a successful restaurant owned by a Greek/Armenian family in Henderson, Nevada — just a few weeks after officially deciding to move forward on their entrepreneurial journey together. The Great Greek originally opened in 2011, and by the time Nick and Trent found it, there were lines out the door. The business partners took over ownership and operation of the restaurant in January of 2016.
The Great Greek’s new owners say they didn’t need to make any major changes. What was already in place was working. They did make a few systematic changes, and by the end of their first year, the restaurant’s gross revenue grew by 18 percent. It was time to expand.
In June of 2017, they opened a second restaurant in the southwest area of Las Vegas, this time building from the ground up. By then, Nick and Trent were already thinking about the future. They decided this shop would be the flagship location for The Great Greek’s growing empire.
The second location was an instant success, with daily sales eclipsing the sales of the original Henderson location in the first week. Nick and Trent wanted to start sharing The Great Greek experience with customers, and other entrepreneurs, around the world. Shortly thereafter, they began working with the United Franchise Group, the global leader for entrepreneurs, with more than 1,400 locations in 80 countries, to make that dream a reality. Now, there are new The Great Greek restaurants on the way in Las Vegas and in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, with inquiries from prospective owners as far away as Egypt.
Mediterranean and Greek food isn’t new, in fact, it seems like a time-honored recipe for success. And there isn’t anything like it in the fast-casual dining sector.
“I truly believe that in very short order we’re going to be the worldwide leader in fast-casual Mediterranean food,” says Nick. “We have a product that is so special and there isn’t another Greek brand out there.”
Contact us for more information about owning a The Great Greek franchise restaurant.