Atlanta-based Popeyes is opening a new location in southeast Atlanta.
The popular chicken restaurant is well underway, turning a vacant piece of land at the corner of Moreland Avenue and Vickers Street into a new restaurant. Not so long ago, the 1211 Moreland Avenue parcel was home to a Huddle House, but it had been vacant for months.
Popeyes is also opening a new location on North Druid Hills Road, in front of North DeKalb Mall.
While Popeyes is well known in Atlanta, with plenty of locations, they are taking an inventive, albeit controversial approach, expanding in the Minneapolis and northern California markets. Popeyes recently won court approval to purchase a total of 28 KFC restaurants from bankrupt Wagstaff Management. 14 of the restaurants are located in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, markets where Popeyes currently has little presence. Plans call for all 28 locations to reopen in 3-5 months. Interestingly in this case, there was a competing offer from KFC corporate, but Wagstaff's primary creditor, GE Capital, opted to accept a lower offer from Popeyes. Apparently GE has no trust in KFC and therefore wanted basically anyone other than KFC to take over.
According to many industry observers, Popeyes has been steadily growing in both sales and store count over the past couple of years. KFC, on the other hand, one third of the Yum! Brands trifecta that also includes Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, has been slipping. KFC recently reported the weakest sales at stores open at least a year of any Yum! concept.
What is your favorite chicken chain? Zaxby's? Chick-fil-A? Popeyes? El Pollo Loco? Guthrie's? Raising Cane's? KFC? ... or are you a vegetarian? Do you think Popeyes will overtake KFC in sales? Please weigh in and share your thoughts.