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Carl's Jr.


Carl’s Jr. is a well-loved American fast-food restaurant, with locations mostly in the American West and Southwest. Headquartered in Carpinteria, California, Carl’s Jr. is owned by parent group CKE Restaurants, Inc., which also owns Hardee’s fast-food restaurants. Combined with Hardee’s, Carl’s Jr. is the Number Five fast-food chain in the United States. In staying with the trend of co-branding among fast-food restaurant chains, Carl’s Jr. has been recently co-branded with Green Burrito, similar to co-branding among Yum! Brands, with KFC and Taco Bell, for example. Carl’s Jr. offers a lengthy menu for a fast-food restaurant, including a variety of burgers, sandwiches, salads, sides, desserts, beverages and breakfast items.

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Facts & Figures

Liquid capital required
Net worth required
$1,300,000 - $1,800,000
Franchise fee
Units in operation


Carl’s Jr. has built a strong reputation as America’s best burger chain. Carl’s Jr. is seeking exceptional franchise candidates in select markets in the U.S. and around the world. Carl’s Jr. retains its internationally loyal customer base because of its innovative menu strategy of delivering top- quality restaurant items, such as its line of 100% Black Angus Beef Six Dollar Burgers. It’s hard for franchisees to go wrong with the Carl’s Jr. premier quality menu.

Carl’s Jr. Franchise Opportunities – History

Carl’s Jr. was founded in 1941 by fast-food industry pioneer Carl N. Karcher, who, with his wife borrowed $311 to purchase a hot dog cart. In less than five years they built the business and opened their first restaurant, Carl’s Drive- In Barbecue, in Anaheim, California. The first two Carl’s Jr. restaurants, which were smaller versions of Carl’s Drive-In, were opened in 1956. By 1981, with 300 restaurants, Carl’s Jr. went public, and has now grown to more than 1,000 locations worldwide. In 1997, CKE Restaurants, Inc., acquired Hardee’s restaurants, with 2,500 locations, which are being gradually converted to be more like Carl’s Jr. brands. In 2008, Carl Karcher died at the age of 90.

Carl’s Jr. Franchise Cost / Initial Investment / Carl’s Jr. Franchise


The franchise fee for a Carl’s Jr. restaurant is $35,000. The total investment to become a Carl’s Jr. franchisee is between $1.3 million and $1.9 million. A royalty fee of 4% on gross monthly receipts is paid to the company, with a 20-year Term of Agreement.

Carl’s Jr. Business Opportunities: Other Information

Carl’s Jr. has employed a long succession of successful advertising campaigns, including multiple endorsements by well-known celebrities. In 2005, Paris Hilton appeared in a TV ad, as have NBA star Dennis Rodman, and most recently model Kate Upton.

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