El Pollo Loco (Nasdaq: LOCO) has signed a franchise agreement to enter the Kansas and Missouri markets for the first time.
The Costa Mesa-based restaurant chain signed with a new franchise partner, EPL Missouri LLC, to develop eight restaurants in the Kansas City metro area and potential Missouri sites over the next 10 years. This marks the fifth development deal for 2022.
EPL Missouri’s leadership team holds more than 50 years of retail experience combined in the restaurant and grocery spaces, according to officials.
El Pollo Loco has a new restaurant prototype design to better cater to the chain’s “off-premise business” which include in-house additions like digital menu boards and cubbies for to-go and delivery orders.
The Mexican-American restaurant chain counts over 485 locations, both company-owned and franchised. Currently valued at $399 million, El Pollo Loco shares remained unchanged at $10.77 during midday trading.