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Frisco-Based Layne’s Chicken Fingers Expands Into East Texas

25 locations are expected to open over the next 10 years

Frisco’s Layne’s Chicken Fingers, known as the “Soon to be Famous” chicken franchise, is expanding from North Texas, making its way east.

Taylor Thomas, who comes from a family of restaurant franchise owners, is making its way to East Texas as the newest franchisee of Layne's Chicken Fingers. 

"After earning my master's degree in 2016, I joined the family business with a vision for expansion," he explained. "Once we reached the limits of our territory, it was time to find a new brand that aligned with our aspirations for growth and community connection."

Thomas is committed to opening 25 units across the region

"When we first started looking, we were only looking at major brands," Thomas said in an official statement. "But we realized that the bigger the brand, the more likely that family-owned atmosphere goes away. There was a disconnect there. We want to feel like we can bounce off ideas and help the whole brand grow. The restaurant business isn't easy — it never has been. So it's important to have that collaboration between the franchisee and franchisor."

Thomas was particularly drawn to Layne's Chicken Fingers because of its strong emphasis on maintaining a family-oriented culture, even as the brand expands. He was also impressed by the simplicity and quality of Layne's operations, along with its well-defined culture.

"We were out eating one night and one of our buddies brought up Layne's," Thomas said. "We didn't even know the brand. We went to check it out, started talking with the team, visited some locations in Dallas and fell in love with the product. It was really everything we were after."

Thomas plans to open the first Layne's Chicken Fingers location in Tyler by the end of the year. Committed to a long-term vision of expansion, he has signed on to open 25 stores over the next decade.

In the first quarter of 2024, the brand also secured 91 new restaurants across eight franchise agreements. It anticipates an additional 10 openings this year, including inaugural locations in Nashville, Tennessee; Janesville, Wisconsin; and Roswell, Georgia — marking the brand's debut in each state.

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