No longer just a low-fat ice cream imitation, frozen yogurt has exploded in popularity over the last seven years, thanks to the emergence of tart flavors and the self-serve model. Several major franchise players have positioned themselves at the top of this frozen mountain by keeping up with trends and rolling out new flavors and experiences on a regular basis. Here are the top five frozen yogurt franchise brands, according to market share ownership:
5. Red Mango
Red Mango, which owns 7.8 percent of market shares, targets the health-conscious consumer, touting its frozen yogurts’ lack of preservatives and artificial flavorings. Unlike other franchise brands that operate just one type of location, Red Mango operates three: full-service, self-service and kiosks. It also targets locations near college campuses, where students are drawn to its healthier products. 2014 sales reached an estimated $140 million, growing 33.1 percent annually.
sweetFrog is one of the few major players based outside of California in Richmond, Virginia. Since opening its first store in 2009, it now boasts 250 locations in the U.S. with 10.4 percent of market share ownership. The company has avoided opening stores in the West, with only a sprinkling of locations in California, the unofficial birthplace of frozen yogurt. Sales were estimated to reach $187 million in 2014, equaling 166.3 percent annualized revenue growth.
Yogurtland, which owns 10.6 percent of market shares, was among the first to introduce the interactive self-serve model of frozen yogurt that has since been imitated by many other brands. Yogurtland now has more than 250 locations throughout the U.S., Mexico and Guam, and offers 50 flavor choices and 40 toppings. It grew at an annual rate of 36.3 percent from 2009 – 2014 to $197 million last year.
TCBY, which has been open since 1981, experienced its peak-performance during the 1990s, yet it still owns the second largest percentage of market shares at 10.8 percent. TCBY has attempted to rebrand itself since 2010 to keep up with the new image of froyo, trading in its full-service model and outdated décor for self-serve machines and brightly colored, modern decorations. TCBY revenue has fallen each year since 2009 by an average of 4.7 percent per year. Nonetheless, total revenue generated by TCBY stores reached $194 million in 2014.
Established in 2007, Menchie’s has grown rapidly over the last five years. Menchie’s now owns the largest portion of market shares at 13.6 percent. Offering a selection of non-fat, low-carb, no-sugar-added, gluten-free, vegan and dairy-free menu options, Menchie’s had more than 300 U.S. locations as of 2014, as well as a handful of international locations. Menchie’s system-wide revenue increased 17.1 percent to $246 million in 2014.
Learn more about the frozen yogurt industry as a whole in our in-depth frozen yogurt industry report, complete with infographic.