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Who Owns Five Guys?

There are very few things Americans love more than a delicious burger and fries. Luckily, there’s no shortage of great places waiting to satisfy the taste buds of hungry Americans. When it comes to the best places, Five Guys is regularly near the top of many people’s lists. The restaurant creates high-quality food and delivers excellent customer service. 

So who owns Five Guys and is responsible for so many happy taste buds? Let’s take a look.

What Is Five Guys?

Five Guys is a popular burger chain that started in Arlington, Va., in 1986. What began as a single carry-out burger joint has grown into a massive burger empire with more than 1,700 locations worldwide and another 1,500 in development.

Jerry and Janie Murrell were in for a surprise when their two oldest sons decided not to attend college. However, they worked out a deal with their kids to take the money they had set aside for college and invest it into starting a hamburger joint.

This was a fantastic decision for the family as Jerry Murrell partnered with his four sons (Jim, Matt, Chad, and Ben) to create the original “Five Guys.” However, the couple had a fifth son, Tyler, two years after starting the brand. The new “Five Guys” are the five Murrell brothers who continue to play pivotal roles in the company.

What Is Five Guys Most Known For?

Five Guys is most known for its hamburgers that come in “little” (one patty) and “regular” (two patties) sizes. In addition, customers can spruce up their sandwiches to perfection by choosing from 15 different toppings at no additional charge.

Another thing that Five Guys is most known for is their delicious fresh-cut french fries. They cook them to perfection in peanut oil, and the results are out of this world. They don’t hold back on the serving sizes of their fries, either. Their size-large fries are enough to feed a small army.

Lastly, it’s known for providing complimentary roasted in-shell peanuts. You’ll see boxes of peanuts sitting around the locations that guests can enjoy while in the establishment. Because Five Guys makes their burgers and fries to order, it takes more time than a typical fast-food restaurant. So the peanuts are an excellent distraction for hungry customers.

Pro Tip: Order up! Make sure you know these 5 Unwritten Rules for Eating at Five Guys before you dig in.

Five Guys restaurant sign
When you’re craving a burger and fries, a trip to Five Guys will do the trick.

Who Owns Five Guys?

As has been the case since 1986, the Murrell family owns Five Guys. The five brothers, and their parents, still own and maintain the business despite its massive growth. Obviously, they don’t do it all on their own. They have approximately 5,000 employees between their locations and behind the corporate scenes.

Is Five Guys Publicly Owned?

Five Guys, like several other successful fast-food restaurants, is not a publicly owned company. The Murrell family privately owns it. However, while you may not be able to own stock in the company, investors can consider opening their own franchise location.

Does Shaquille O’Neal Own Any Five Guys?

Former NBA superstar Shaquille O’Neal knows how to do more than just play basketball, including being an investor in Five Guys. 

While Shaq isn’t the owner of Five Guys, he has owned a Five Guys location or two. In fact, he’s owned and sold 155 Five Guys locations. This equates to approximately 10% of all Five Guys restaurants.

Friends enjoying meal together at Five Guys
Your Five Guys burger and fries were invested in by none other than Shaquille O’Neil.

How Much Does a Five Guys Franchise Cost?

You don’t have to be a former NBA player to own a Five Guys. However, it doesn’t hurt. The costs associated with starting a location are between $152,000 and $360,000, and a requirement to have liquid assets available of $150,000. In addition, each franchise location must pay a $25,000 franchise fee to the company.

As we said, you don’t have to be a mega-star to own a Five Guys location, but it definitely helps make these costs a little bit easier to swallow. The restaurants are well-loved in the cities with franchises and often receive awards.

Who Is Five Guys’ Biggest Competitor?

While Five Guys keeps their menu rather simple, that doesn’t mean they don’t have competition. Their biggest competitors include McDonald’s, In-N-Out Burger, Sonic Drive-In, and any other restaurant that sells burgers and fries.

Five Guys separates itself from the pack by offering customers the opportunity to customize their sandwiches based on their preferences. While others may claim customers can “have it their way,” that’s not always the case. However, with 15 free toppings to choose from, there are over 250,000 potential combinations for customers.

Pro Tip: Craving a burger and fries? We ranked The 5 Best (and 5 Worst) Fast Food Burgers.

Is Eating at Five Guys Worth It?

Five Guys is one of the best places to get burgers. They’ve figured out how to do what many of their competitors haven’t, how to cook fries and burgers perfectly. Much of their competition can do one, but not the other. Luckily, Five Guys solves the problem and plans to expand its locations. 

So if you don’t have a location near you right now, there could be one soon.

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