Connect with us

Markets

Ranked: The Most Popular Fast Food Brands in America

Published

on

fast food brands ranked by systemwide sales in 2021

Can I share this graphic?
Yes. Visualizations are free to share and post in their original form across the web—even for publishers. Please link back to this page and attribute Visual Capitalist.
When do I need a license?
Licenses are required for some commercial uses, translations, or layout modifications. You can even whitelabel our visualizations. Explore your options.
Interested in this piece?
Click here to license this visualization.

Ranked: The Most Popular Fast Food Brands in America

Ever since the McDonald brothers created the concept of fast food in 1940, the restaurant’s golden arches have continued to beckon customers to its quick, cheap, and tasty meals.

McDonald’s is still the most popular fast food brand in America today—with $46 billion in systemwide sales last year.

This graphic uses data from a report on America’s top 50 fast food chains by Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) Magazine. The popular brands are sized by their 2021 systemwide sales and broken down into six broad categories: Burger, Chicken, Snack, Pizza, Sandwich, and Global.

Note: a number of these figures are estimates. Unofficial figures are noted in the graphic with an asterisk.

The Most Popular Fast Food Companies

It’s indisputable that McDonald’s is America’s favorite fast food restaurant, if not the world’s. McDonald’s sales are almost double the second the place restaurant’s, Starbucks—totaling $46 billion compared to the coffee shop’s $24 billion.

Here’s a closer look at the numbers:

RankCompanySystemwide Sales (2021)Category
#1McDonald's$46.0 billionBurger
#2Starbucks$24.3 billionSnack
#3Chick-fil-A$16.7 billionChicken
#4Taco Bell$12.6 billionGlobal
#5Wendy's$11.1 billionBurger
#6Dunkin'$10.4 billionSnack
#7Burger King$10.0 billionBurger
#8Subway$9.4 billionSandwich
#9Domino's$8.6 billionPizza
#10Chipotle$7.5 billionGlobal
#11Sonic Drive-In$5.8 billionBurger
#12Panera Bread$5.7 billionSandwich
#13Pizza Hut$5.5 billionPizza
#14KFC$5.1 billionChicken
#15Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen$4.8 billionChicken
#16Dairy Queen$4.5 billionSnack
#17Arby's$4.5 billionSandwich
#18Panda Express$4.5 billionGlobal
#19Little Caesars$4.2 billionPizza
#20Jack in the Box$4.1 billionBurger
#21Papa Johns$3.5 billionPizza
#22Whataburger$2.7 billionBurger
#23Culver's$2.5 billionBurger
#24Raising Caine's$2.4 billionChicken
#25Jimmy John's$2.3 billionSandwich
#26Wingstop$2.3 billionChicken
#27Zaxby's$2.2 billionChicken
#28Jersey Mike's$2.2 billionSandwich
#29Hardee's$2.1 billionBurger
#30Five Guys$2.1 billionBurger
#31Carl's Jr.$1.6 billionBurger
#32Bojangles$1.5 billionChicken
#33In-N-Out Burger$1.2 billionBurger
#34Firehouse Subs$1.0 billionSandwich
#35Krispy Kreme$996 millionSnack
#36Pel Pollo Loco$973 millionChicken
#37Tropical Smoothie Cafe$948 millionSnack
#38Del Taco$931 millionGlobal
#39Checkers/Rally's$931 millionBurger
#40Marco's Pizza$899 millionPizza
#41McAlister's Deli$869 millionSandwich
#42Qdoba$835 millionGlobal
#43Papa Murphy's$809 millionPizza
#44Church's Chicken$776 millionChicken
#45Shake Shack$775 millionBurger
#46Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburger$759 millionBurger
#47Tim Hortons$687 millionSnack
#48Baskin-Robbins$686 millionSnack
#49Moe's$661 millionGlobal
#50White Castle$615 millionBurger

Most of the top 20 restaurants are extremely well known, like Chick-fil-A in third place and Taco Bell in fourth. Some of these chains, however, will be unrecognizable depending on which part of the U.S. you live in. While Bojangles is ubiquitous in the Southeast, for example, many on the West Coast may have never heard of it.

Some of the lower ranking restaurants include Shake Shack (#45), White Castle (#50), and the Canadian-founded Tim Hortons (#47).

Fast Food Industry Trends

America’s fast food industry is expected to generate $331 billion in sales in 2022, and many restaurants are capitalizing on trends shaped in part by the pandemic.

Fast food companies are already somewhat ideal for pandemic conditions with drive-thrus, fast service, and a model that doesn’t encourage sitting down to eat.

Looking to the future, Starbucks, for example, has claimed 90% of its new stores will feature drive-thrus. Digital sales and transactions that limit contact, making fast food even more quick and convenient, are growing as well. Starbucks’ mobile order service has grown 400% over the last five years. And in 2021, the delivery side of their business grew 30% year-over-year, according to the QSR report.

Additionally, the report featured 50 up-and-coming fast food companies to watch in the industry. Here’s a look:

RankCompanySystemwide Sales (2021)Category
#1Smoothie King$602 millionSnack
#2Habit Burger$600 millionBurger
#3Auntie Anne's$576 millionSnack
#4Captain D's$567 millionSeafood
#5Steak 'N' Shake$539 millionBurger
#6Portillo's$526 millionSnack
#7Jamba$505 millionSnack
#8Schlotzsky's$332 millionSandwich
#9Krystal$323 millionBurger
#10Fazoli's$298 millionGlobal
#11Pizza Ranch$279 millionPizza
#12Scooter's Coffee$263 millionSnack
#13Penn Station$258 millionSandwich
#14Chicken Salad Chick$255 millionChicken
#15Mountain Mike's$254 millionPizza
#16Smashburger$253 millionBurger
#17Cinnabon$224 millionSnack
#18Wetzel's$219 millionSnack
#19Donatos$211 millionPizza
#20Newk's$208 millionSandwich
#21Bonchon$173 millionChicken
#22Waba Grill$170 millionGlobal
#23The Human Bean $109 millionSnack
#24Capriotti's$108 millionSandwich
#25Great Harvest Bread Company$108 millionSandwich
#26Teriyaki Madness$90 millionGlobal
#27Roy Rogers$82 millionBurger
#28Pizza Guys$79 millionPizza
#29Mooyah$71 millionBurger
#30Salsarita's$68 millionGlobal
#31Dog Haus$67 millionSnack
#32Gold Star$61 millionBurger
#33Hawaiian Bros$55 millionGlobal
#34Honeygrow$55 millionGlobal
#35Robeks$50 millionSnack
#36PJ’s Coffee of New Orleans$46 millionSnack
#37Kolache Factory$46 millionSnack
#38Juice it Up!$43 millionSnack
#39Happy Joe's$38 millionPizza
#40Rusty Taco$35 millionGlobal
#41Wing Zone$34 millionChicken
#42Swig$29 millionSnack
#43Pickleman's$29 millionSandwich
#44Killer Burger$17 millionBurger
#45Wing Snob$15 millionChicken
#46Sobol$13 millionGlobal
#47Bad Ass Coffee of Hawaii$12 millionSnack
#48Asian Box$11 millionGlobal
#49Sauce on the Side$9 millionGlobal
#50Mici Italian$6 millionGlobal

Some of these are well-established fast food joints that are simply growing their sales, like Cinnabon, while others are newer to the scene.

America’s Favorite Fast Food

Using the ranking’s food categories, we calculated the total sales in each category from the top 50 to figure out which foods are America’s favorites. The winner is evidently burgers, with $92.2 billion in collective sales. Here’s a look at the breakdown:

RankFood CategoryCategory Cumulative Sales
#1Burger$92.2 billion
#2Snack $42.5 billion
#3Chicken$36.7 billion
#4Global$27.0 billion
#5Sandwich$25.9 billion
#6Pizza$23.5 billion

Sales at Burger restaurants were more than double the runner-up, which was Snacks. After all, nothing is more American than a classic hamburger and fries.

Click for Comments

Markets

Ranked: Which NBA Team Takes Home the Most Revenue?

The Celtics and the Mavericks are the fourth and fifth highest-earning teams in the NBA. We show the top teams in the NBA by revenue in 2023.

Published

on

This circle graphic shows the top teams in the NBA by revenue during the 2022-2023 season.

Which NBA Team Takes Home the Most Revenues?

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

The NBA is projected to earn $13 billion in revenue this year before revenue sharing and debt payments, a 11% jump from last season, driving NBA team valuations even higher.

Since 2005, NBA team valuations have increased faster than any other major U.S. league by a wide margin. For perspective, the rise in their combined valuation has exceeded growth in the S&P 500 by more than threefold during this time period.

This graphic shows the top NBA teams by revenue, based on data from JP Morgan Asset Management.

Ranked: The Highest-Earning NBA Teams

Below, we show the revenue of all 30 NBA teams as of the 2022-2023 season:

RankingTeam2022-2023 Season
Revenue
Valuation
1Golden State Warriors$765M$7.7B
2Los Angeles Lakers$516M$6.4B
3New York Knicks$504M$6.6B
4Boston Celtics$443M$4.7B
5Dallas Mavericks$429M$4.5B
6Los Angeles Clippers$425M$4.7B
7Houston Rockets$381M$4.4B
8Chicago Bulls$372M$4.6B
9Philadelphia 76ers$371M$4.3B
10Miami Heat$371M$3.9B
11Brooklyn Nets$367M$3.9B
12Phoenix Suns$366M$4.0B
13Denver Nuggets$348M$3.4B
14Cleveland Cavaliers$348M$3.4B
15Milwaukee Bucks$329M$3.2B
16Atlanta Hawks$326M$3.3B
17Washington Wizards$323M$3.5B
18San Antonio Spurs$319M$3.3B
19Toronto Raptors$305M$4.1B
20Portland Trail Blazers$300M$3.1B
21Sacramento Kings$289M$3.3B
22Utah Jazz$274M$3.1B
23Detroit Pistons$274M$3.1B
24Charlotte Hornets$269M$3.0B
25Oklahoma City Thunder$267M$3.1B
26Indiana Pacers$263M$2.9B
27New Orleans Pelicans$262M$2.6B
28Orlando Magic$261M$3.0B
29Minnesota Timberwolves$259M$2.5B
30Memphis Grizzlies$258M$2.4B

Revenue figures are net of arena debt service and revenue sharing

With $765 million in revenue, the Golden State Warriors are the highest-earning team in the league, thanks to the stellar performances of all-star players Klay Thompson, Stephen Curry, and Draymond Green.

These players were instrumental in driving the valuation of the franchise, which grew from $1.5 billion in 2015 to a remarkable $7.7 billion in 2023. At this valuation, the Golden State Warriors are the second-most valuable sports team in America, following after the $9 billion Dallas Cowboys NFL franchise. Since 2010, the Warriors’ revenue has increased by sevenfold.

Not only did the team have the highest NBA TV ratings in seven of the last eight years as of last season, the Warriors have the largest social media following across U.S. sport franchises, including 32.4 million Instagram followers. By comparison, the Lakers have 24.6 million followers. Adding to this, the team’s jersey patch deal with Rakuten is worth approximately $45 million per season alone.

Ranking in second are the Los Angeles Lakers, earning $516 million in revenue. Over the last decade, revenues have increased by 76% fueled by the star power of LeBron James and the team’s world-renowned brand. In 2021, the team signed a five-year $100 million jersey patch deal with Korean food brand, Bibigo, making it one of the most valuable in the league.

The New York Knicks are third in revenue with $504 million, followed by the 2023-24 season champions, the Boston Celtics with $443 million in the 2022-23 season and the Dallas Mavericks in fifth at $429 million.

How Do NBA Teams Earn Revenue?

Below, we show the primary sources of revenue for the National Basketball Association (NBA):

Revenue Stream2022-2023 Season
Revenue
Share of Revenues
National Revenue
(Media/broadcast deals, merchandise, shared ticket revenue, other sponsorships)
$4.5B41%
Seating/Suites$2.9B26%
Local Media$1.4B13%
Team Sponsorships$1.3B12%
Concessions/Parking/Other$0.9B8%

As we can see, national revenue makes up the league’s largest share, driven by broadcasting and streaming agreements with national providers.

Going forward, these contract values are set to grow substantially. Today, the league is negotiating broadcasting deals with Amazon, ESPN, and NBC worth an estimated $76 billion over 11 years—making the annual contract value 2.6 times higher than its current contract. With NBA viewership up 16% across ESPN and ABC compared to the 2021-2022 season, strong demand is driving bigger media deals. During the 2022-2023 season, average viewership reached 1.7 million per game across these outlets.

Ticket and suite sales, another key source of revenue, topped $2.9 billion over the 2022-2023 season. In some cases, courtside tickets cost upwards of $3,000 per seat, with a host of celebrities from Jack Nicholson to Kendall Jenner and Bad Bunny sitting close to the action.

Following next in line were local media deals, worth $1.4 billion, and team sponsorship deals, valued at $1.3 billion.

Continue Reading
Visualizing Asia's Water Dilemma

Subscribe

Popular