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Today’s guest is Kevin Bazner, CEO of one of America’s historic, if not iconic and legendary restaurant franchise brands. Are you thinking McDonalds, Burger King or perhaps KFC… Nope, all three of those upstarts go no further back than the fifties. You’d have to travel back to before sliced bread was created in 1928 to get even close, to the birth of this brand, I’m talking America’s first restaurant franchise ever, A&W Restaurants. I think to be statistically accurate, NATHAN’s Famous in Coney Island began doing business 3 years earlier than A&W, but A&W beat them to the punch by miles, in terms of franchising.
A fun fact or two about A&W: their name came from the first letters of each of the founders last names: Roy Allen and Frank Wright. A&W was also home to the first drive-thru restaurant in America is also the birth place of the bacon cheeseburger. One last trivia tidbit, back in the late 1920s, the Marriotts, JW and Alice ran an A&W Restaurant Stand in Washington, DC, before they pivoted much later, to developing hotels..