|An implicit white company|
|Black percentage of areas where Chick-fil-A has restaurants in Georgia|
Their company, Chick-fil-A Inc., is the country's No. 2 fast-food chicken chain, with 1,055 restaurants and $1.2-billion in revenues last year. Another 500 stores are planned by 2006. Even Warren Buffett stopped by the Atlanta company's offices recently for a chat.
But Chick-fil-A has a higher calling than just chicken. "We're here to glorify God," said president Dan Cathy, who was in town this week to celebrate the opening of a $2-million store in Oldsmar.
Since 1967, Chick-fil-A has juggled profit and prayer. Founder and CEO Truett Cathy, Dan Cathy's 81-year-old father, makes no bones about the fact that it's a company built on Christian principles. Chick-fil-A is the only major fast-food chain that is closed on Sundays. It spends millions each year on foster care homes, college scholarships and summer camps. Prayer is not unwelcome at the company's headquarters or stores.
"I see no conflict between biblical principles and good business practice," Truett Cathy told NBC Nightly News in July.
Ethics and charity are not the only arrows in Chick-fil-A's quiver. QSR Magazine recently ranked its drive-through service No. 1 in the industry. It is using cash, not loans, to finance its current growth plan, though it still has some bank debts left over from the 1990s. It possesses one of the better known icons in the fast-food world: a cartoon cow who humorously tries to save his own skin by encouraging customers to "eat mor chikin'." (Chick-fil-A does not serve hamburgers.)
Except for a couple hundred licensed stores in airports and on college campuses, Chick-fil-A owns its restaurants. Each one is run by a separate operator who shares the profits, but not the equity, with the chain. Operators like Gus Mir, who runs a store in Lakeland, put up a refundable $5,000 investment and are guaranteed a minimum income of $30,000 per year. The chain takes 15 percent of the gross revenue and half the profit. The average operator of a mall store earns roughly $70,000 a year, Dan Cathy said, while operators of stand-alone restaurants typically earn double that.
Cathy said his opposition to franchising is simple. He'd rather do business with a hungry entrepreneur than a wealthy investor who is unwilling to "interview 16-year-olds."
Truett Cathy’s loyalty to Chick-fil-A restaurant Operators is evident in the selection process. “We don’t select or even seriously consider an Operator unless we want the individual to be with us until one of us dies or retires,” he says.
On p. 97-98 of that book, we learn this:
“We expect our Operators to abide by several tenets that we adhere to:
- People want to work with a person, not for a company.
- Each new Operator is committed to a single restaurant.
- Operators will hold no outside employment or business interest.
- We choose Operators for their ability and their influence, so we want them in their restaurants.
- We expect quality interaction between Operators and team members.
- We expect quality interaction between Operators and customers, both in the restaurant and in the community.”
“Most (Operators)…feel that this is more than just a job. They feel either a divine call or the satisfaction of a desire to make a difference in the world. They contribute greatly to the development of teenagers who work in our restaurants, creating a wholesome atmosphere in which to work and modeling positive leadership traits that teenagers will take into their adult lives. Our Operators consider themselves to be mentors to the next generation.”
|White percentage of areas where Chick-fil-A has restaurants in Georgia|
Chick-fil-A isn’t McDonald’s; it isn’t Burger King. It certainly isn’t Coca-Cola (I’d hope a piece was up at Vdare.com to explain this in greater detail – perhaps soon), which has no problem what a community looks like that it peddles it products in, as long as the consumers there can purchase an abundant amount of Coca-Cola; Chick-fil-A Owners/Operators are the type of people who are instrumental in building solid communities and as serving as leaders and uniting their towns.
- Small Dawsonville, Georgia (population 619 according to the 2000 census) can have a Chick-fil-A; of course, the city is 97 percent white and zero percent Black.
- Georgia's population breakdown is 55.9 percent white and 30.5 percent Black.
- 137 restaurants were located in majority-white areas.
- 16 restaurants were located in majority-Black areas, with 75 percent of those in cities that were majority white when the restaurant was constructed.
- Despite the famed Historically Black Colleges and Universites (HBCU) located in Atlanta, only one Georgia HBCU has a Chick-fil-A –- Albany State. Georgia Tech (62 percent white, 6 percent Black); UGA (80 percent white, 8 percent Black); West Georgia (78 percent white, 20 percent Black); Valdosta State (76 percent white, 20 percent Black; Berry College (92 percent white, 1 percent Black); Kennesaw State (69 percent white, 13 percent Black); and Mercer University in Macon (72 percent white, 17 percent Black).
- Hiram, Georgia, a town that is 60 percent white and 40 percent Black, has a Chick-fil-A location opened in zip code 30141 – which is 91 percent white and 7 percent Black.
- A Chick-fil-A location opened in zip code 30341 (which is 85 percent white and .84 Black), is located in Clayton County… a county that is roughly 70 percent Black.
- The majority of the Fulton County Chick-fil-A’s (outside of hospital or one at Georgia State University) are in North Fulton; an area that is overwhelmingly white.
- Chick-fil-A locations thrive in Alpharetta (72 percent white, 11 percent Black), with four separate locations; Peachtree City (87 percent white, 6 percent Black) with three locations; McDonough (76 percent white, 19 percent Black) with three locations; Roswell (81 percent white, 9 percent Black) with two locations; Kennesaw (64 percent white, 22 percent Black) with three locations; Flowery Branch (80 percent white, 10 percent Black) with two locations; Fayetteville (77 percent white, 20 percent Black) with two locations; Snellville (89 percent white, 5 percent Black) with two locations; Suwanne (84 percent white, 6 percent Black); and Newnan (84 percent white, 12 percent Black) with two locations.
- The Chick-fil-A in majority Black Madison, Georgia is located in a zip code (30650) that is 64 percent white and 34 percent Black).
- Strangely, few majority Black areas (virtually none in South Fulton County, and only one – Lithonia – in a majority Black zip code in DeKalb County) have Chick-fil-A’s.
The question has to be asked now, based on the empirical evidence we have garnered from a look at the 196 Chick-fil-A locations in Georgia (wait, we forgot the one at Greenbriar Mall in DeKalb County, one of the oldest Chick-fil-A locations that closed --- because the mall went all-Black. When it opened in the late 1970s, the county was roughly 75 percent white… now it’s only 35 percent white):
A true defense of Chick-fil-A is a defense of the communities that the Owners/Operators choose to do business in; based on the analysis of the 196 locations in Georgia, they look like an America that is quickly dying; replaced with communities that have virtually no social capital.
Racial Breakdown of the Cites in Georgia Where Chick-fil-A Operates Stores