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Bojangles' adding 7 metro Atlanta restaurants | Business

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Bojangles' adding 7 metro Atlanta restaurants
Bojangles' adding 7 metro Atlanta restaurants

ATLANTA -- A chain of chicken restaurants is finding Georgia, and especially metro Atlanta, to be one of its best markets.

Charlotte, N.C.-based Bojangles' Famous Chicken 'N Biscuits expects to add nine new restaurants, including seven in metro Atlanta, by the end of 2012. Locations include Canton, Cartersville, Cornelia, Jefferson, Lithia Springs, Tifton, Toccoa, Villa Rica, and at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

Most are franchises, but at least two of the new stores will be company-owned, according to Bojangles' Restaurants Inc. executive vice president Eric Newman.

The chain plans an additional seven stores in 2013.

"The growth has picked up in Atlanta more than any other," Newman said. "It's our No. 1 growth market right now."

Restaurants typically are 3,800 square feet and employ about 15 people, Newman said. Each location requires an investment of about $1.7 million.

Bojangles' currently operates 42 restaurants in Georgia, including 29 locations in metro Atlanta. The company has a total of 519 restaurants in 11 states -- 201 are company-owned and 318 are franchises.

Newman said he expects the privately-held company to break $1 billion in sales system-wide in about two years.

"I've never seen it run this consistently," said Newman, who's been with the company for 27 years.

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