for that brand. The ghost restaurants I've read about are one-off new brands in big cities.
But it's got to be difficult to scale an operation that customers have not heard of and can't
visit. Web sites and brochures in hotels will only take them so far.
But what about an established national brand with universal name recognition?
It could work like this - a franchised restaurant chain launches a delivery program using an outside food delivery service. The company sets things up in such a way that their franchisees absorb all the costs and of course do all the work. Eventually this establishes which markets will be high volume delivery markets.
The company then establishes "Ghost Kitchens" in the middle of the best delivery markets.
The build out is simple - a modern kitchen layout in a warehouse or in the basement of a building. The most important location requirement would be easy in/out for the delivery vehicles.
No drive-thru, no dining room, no sign package, no crew uniforms, just a kitchen. They probably wouldn't even need a POS.
Once the kitchen is ready the franchise company gives the delivery company a list of zip
codes where all deliveries will be routed to the new company operated kitchen.
What about the industry wide movement away from company operated restaurants? This
is something different. It's the restaurant business reduced to it's simplest form. It should
be extremely easy to run and very efficient (even a McOpCo manager could run it). If it
does a decent volume with free standing restaurant menu prices it could be very profitable.
No need for franchising. The capital outlay would be small, and again, the operation would
The above speculation assumes the delivery business will be huge for QSR restaurants.
That's still doubtful. With nearly all restaurants getting into delivery the sales are going to
be spread so thin that individual restaurants will not profit from delivery.