12. Taco Bell
Last Year's Rank: 13
Investment Range: Over $1 Million
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The third largest holding of Yum Brands (which also owns the chains KFC and Pizza Hut), Taco Bell is the largest taco and burrito chain in the world.
At the end of 2015, Taco Bell had 6,400 units, operating in 20 countries and territories. More than 80 percent of these are owned and operated by franchisees.
In 2014 Taco Bell unveiled U.S. Taco Co., a fast-casual taco restaurant with slightly different food options and American fillings. In 2015, the company also launched its Cantina concept in a handful of urban locations. They have revised, tapas-style menus, cocktails (where allowed by local ordinances) and no drive-thru in an effort to appeal to urban dwellers and workers.
Taco Bell has offered numerous menu innovations over the past few years. Taco Bell added the popular Doritos Locos Tacos in 2012, and implemented a breakfast menu in 2014. The Dollar Cravings value menu was launched in 2014, and in 2015 Taco Bell launched a certified vegan menu.
Global Sales: $10,145,000,000
US Units: 6,446
International Units: 403
Total Units: 6,849
Percent Franchised: 90%
% International Units: 6%
US Franchised Units: 5,799
International Franchised Units: 397