First Tennessee releases 2017 Restaurant Review

Report lists dining trends, Top 100 chains

Memphis, Tennessee, UNITED STATES

MEMPHIS, Tenn., Aug. 23, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Chicken and snack chains outperformed all other segments in year-over-year comparisons and fast casual has changed the restaurant industry landscape since 2007, according to First Tennessee’s Franchise Finance 2017 Restaurant Review.  The annual review of the restaurant industry is published by First Tennessee Bank, the regional bank of First Horizon National Corp. (NYSE:FHN). 

The nation’s Top 100 restaurant chains accounted for nearly half of total restaurant sales last year, and quick-service restaurants continued to steal market share from full-service restaurants. Consumer spending increased for the seventh consecutive year.

“Since 2007 fast casual restaurants have led market share growth, fueled by consumers’ lifestyles, dining preferences and spending habits,” said Todd Jones, managing director and group head of franchise finance at First Tennessee Bank. “Leading the way in system-wide sales and average unit volume were chicken and snack chains, which have exploded in popularity and in 2016 outpaced all other segments.”

Of the Top 100 chains, nearly 80 percent were franchised, and seven chains were completely franchised systems. Within the top 10 chains, 88 percent of units were franchised. And while chicken and snack segments posted top gains, pizza remains a steady favorite led by No. 10 Domino’s. Sandwich is the largest segment, with 30 chains representing more than $110 billion.

When evaluating segments, even those that have had slower gains since 2007 have remarkable brand success stories that continue to resonate with consumers. While some competitors retreated, they have increased sales and units, proving response to customer preferences can separate a brand from the pack.

About First Tennessee franchise finance

First Tennessee franchise finance, a unit of First Tennessee Bank, is a national restaurant lender that provides flexible access to capital backed by best-in-class customer service. As an experienced team of professionals with market insights and unique access to brands, First Tennessee franchise finance serves operators as they buy, build, remodel and grow. More information is available at

About First Horizon

The 4,300 employees of First Horizon National Corp. (NYSE:FHN) provide financial services through more than 160 First Tennessee Bank locations in Tennessee and across the southern U.S. and 28 FTN Financial offices across the nation. The company was founded during the Civil War in 1864 and has the 14th oldest national bank charter in the country. First Tennessee has one of the highest customer retention rates of any bank in the country, and FTN Financial is a capital markets industry leader in fixed income sales, trading and strategies for institutional customers in the U.S. and abroad. First Horizon has been recognized as one of the nation's best employers by Working Mother and American Banker magazines and the National Association for Female Executives. More information is available at



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