GOLDEN, Colo. -- Boston Chicken here has completed the groundwork in Charlotte, N.C., that will allow it to roll out a new prototype Boston Market store to at least 75 locations before year's end, officials said.
After experimenting at two test sites in Charlotte last year, the company has refined its new format and put it into all seven of its Charlotte stores. Last month, after the retrofits were completed, it launched a blitz of spot television and radio ads in Charlotte that touted the new varieties of food offered.
However, the proposed rollout to other market areas depends on the company's ability to pull itself out of its present financial troubles, at least to an extent that would make the project feasible, company officials said.
"It's our intention to do this. We're readying the next markets right now," said Karen Rugen, senior vice president of communications for Boston Chicken.
She explained that the company is going forward with a previously announced plan to buy back stores from franchisees.
The second Charlotte test store was the star in the successful Charlotte test. Since it opened last fall, it has chalked up sales that soared 30% over the average sales-per-unit in the Boston Market system, officials said.
All the Charlotte stores, including the first test store unveiled last July, have been redone to duplicate that second test store
Elements that represent departures from the company's traditional formats include a grill, a service salad station, a self-service case with prepacked entree and side salads, and an expanded dessert section.