Bojangles’ may build new restaurants here

Published 9:57 pm Friday, March 20, 2009

The chicken and biscuits chain Bojangles’ has announced plans to open 25 new restaurants across Central Alabama, with as many as three possibly going in Chilton County.

Clanton Economic Development Director Rick Russell confirmed that the company is in the process of getting land rezoned on Highway 31 South. The parcel in question is the former location of Mims House of Flowers.

“Nothing is definite yet,” Russell said, adding that the company has not applied for a building permit.

While an e-mail from the company hinted at intentions to open restaurants in Jemison and Maplesville, those intentions could not be confirmed. Maplesville Mayor Kurt Wallace said he had not been contacted by Bojangles’. Jemison Mayor Eddie Reed could not be reached for comment, as city representatives were in Washington, D.C. this past week.

Any new restaurants in the Chilton County area would be part of a multi-year plan to develop the Birmingham market through a combination of company- and franchisee-owned locations.

Four new restaurants are planned to open in the region by the end of 2009, with the first two scheduled to open by mid-summer in Northport and Clinton, respectively.

“We are thrilled to make public the fact that Bojangles’ has a robust growth plan in one of the great, dynamic markets in the country,” said Eric Newman, Executive Vice President of Development for Bojangles’ Restaurants, Inc. “It is the perfect place for us to share the best food available for breakfast, lunch, and dinner with an emphasis on quality and value.”

In addition to Shelby County (Birmingham), Bojangles’ will be focusing its growth in Chilton, Bibb, Blount Calhoun, Cherokee, Clay, Coosa, Cullman, Etowah, Fayette, Greene, Hale, Jefferson, Marion, Pickens, St. Clair, Shelby, Talladega, Tuscaloosa, Walker and Winston counties.

The anticipated business development indicates that Bojangles’ and its franchisees will infuse many millions of dollars into Central Alabama’s economy through local investments. Once complete, the expected 25-plus locations together will employ at least 1,000 people.

“We are proud to bring our distinctive and flavorful menu offerings — made-from-scratch breakfast biscuit sandwiches, Bojangles’ Classic Cajun Chicken, Dirty Rice, Cajun Pintos and legendary iced tea — to the area,” Newman added.

Bojangles’ has proven itself to be an attractive opportunity for franchisees and area developers.

“While our recipe for success is deeply rooted in food quality and innovative store design, it is our proven operational processes and systems that make Bojangles’ such an attractive franchise opportunity,” Newman said.