GE Capital Funds Wendy's Remodels
Wendy's has the remodel program in place. Now it has the funding.
GE Capital, Franchise Finance said this morning that it has provided up to $100 million in financing for Wendy's franchisees to remodel their units under the chain's new Image Activation remodel program.
Wendy's is banking on its remodel program, which cost up to $700,000 for a full-blown store overhaul, to bring in new customers and keep existing diners from emigrating to its rivals Burger King and McDonald's, both of which have been remodeling stores at a much faster clip.
Yet, as these programs have become popular, financing for the remodels has become key to getting those programs off the ground—removing a key hurdle that keeps franchisees from getting the rebuilds done sooner. Miami-based Burger King got its remodel program kickstarted quickly with its own financing program, for instance. And chains like Denny's and others have used their own balance sheets to even guarantee such loans.
It's uncertain whether Wendy's is backing the GE loans, but the financing should help fund the Image Activation program. Wendy's operators have applied to reimage 150 locations, and 100 new remodels are expected to complete by the end of the year, according to the company.