Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers

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Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers
Private
Genre Fast food restaurant
Founded August 26, 1996; 21 years ago (1996-08-26)
Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S.
Founder Todd Graves and Craig Silvey
Headquarters Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S.
Number of locations
360+
Area served
U.S., Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia
Products
Revenue $97.3 million (2007)
Website raisingcanes.com

Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers is a fast-food restaurant chain specializing in chicken fingers, that was founded in Baton Rouge, Louisiana by Todd Graves and Craig Silvey on August 26, 1996. While company headquarters remain in Louisiana, a second restaurant support office was opened in Plano, Texas in 2009.

History[edit]

Todd Graves first started dreaming of his very own restaurant in the early 1990s. Craig Silvey, an initial partner in Todd's plan, was enrolled in a business plan writing course at LSU at the time. They wrote the business plan and Silvey turned it in, for which Silvey received a "B-".[1] Although the business plan was rejected numerous times by potential investors, Graves set out to earn the money he needed to start the restaurant, first by working in refineries in California, then by fishing for sockeye salmon in Alaska. He and Silvey then obtained an SBA loan, which they used to open the first restaurant in Baton Rouge at the intersection of Highland Road and State Street near the LSU campus. They even drew on the help of friends and family for some of the work on Cane's 1, and many of these names are carved in the restaurant woodwork. Originally, the small restaurant competed against a similarly themed drive-in called Bailey's Chicken Fingers on the opposite end of the campus. By 1999, however, it was able to prove itself the more successful business: it forced Bailey's out of business, becoming the only chicken-finger focused restaurant in the area.

In mid-1999, Silvey sold his stake to Graves to focus on completing an MBA at Wake Forest University and work in Silicon Valley. Later, Graves asked Silvey to return as vice president of finance and information technology.

By 2008, the chain had grown to more than 50 locations. Most of the locations are in Louisiana, particularly in the Baton Rouge area. The first location outside of Baton Rouge was opened in 2001 in Lafayette—since then, new restaurants have been opened in 22 other states, in addition to all eight metropolitan areas of Louisiana. Graves plans to continue expansion of the chain throughout the United States and internationally, one each in Kuwait (opened September 2015) & Bahrain (opened September 2016), plus two in Saudi Arabia (first had opened February 2017). Today there are over 360 locations in 23 states.[2] Tennessee opened one in Knoxville in September 2014. California has 6 West Coast locations, all but two in Orange County: the first opened in late October 2015 in Costa Mesa; the second in early December in Aliso Viejo; the third in early March 2016 in Orange; and the fourth had opened in mid-June in Laguna Hills. The very first in L.A. County and fifth overall had opened in Downey in late August; the first location in Riverside County and 6th overall had opened in Riverside in late October 2017. 6 more are planned for early 2018: La Habra, Menifee, Ontario, San Bernardino, Santee & Upland. Kansas opened its very first in Lawrence in early May 2016; the second opened in Overland Park in early October; and a 3rd had opened in Shawnee in late August 2017. Iowa opened its very first in Council Bluffs in mid-October 2016. Illinois has 5 Chicago area locations, all but one in Cook County: they opened its very first in North Riverside, a Chicago suburb in late January 2017, to make it the 23rd state overall; the second opened in mid-February in Oak Lawn and the third opened in Naperville in late April; the 4th had opened in Harwood Heights in late September; the 5th had opened in Evergreen Park in late October.

In January 2009, the company opened a second restaurant support office in Plano, Texas.[3] In June 2011 it opened its 100th restaurant in Laurel, Mississippi. In February 2013 it opened its 150th location in San Antonio, Texas. The milestone 250th location opened in December 2015 in Lake Jackson, Texas. By November 2016 Houston, Texas hosted the milestone 300th restaurant's opening, on Rice & Westpark Tollway; and in late October 2017 Stillwater, Oklahoma was the site of the milestone 350th store.

CEO Graves and the chain have given more than 25 percent of their profits back to the communities where restaurants operate with an emphasis on schools, food banks, active lifestyles, canine assistance and business and entrepreneur organizations.[4]

Name[edit]

Graves and Silvey, who both worked as salmon fishermen in Alaska to raise money to open the first Raising Cane's restaurant, were going to name the chain Sockeye's Chicken Fingers, after the Sockeye salmon they fished for. They were later convinced to name it after Graves's dog, a yellow Labrador, "Raising Cane," called "Cane" for short. The most recent mascot for the restaurant, Raising Cane II, died September 11, 2016 and there has yet to be confirmation if Graves will get a new dog. "Raising Cane I" died of old age.[5]

[edit]

The sign at the original location at the intersection of Highland Rd and State St. in Baton Rouge

The original Raising Cane's was established in Baton Rouge, Louisiana at the North Gates of Louisiana State University, at the intersection of East State Street and Highland Road. When remodeling the building, Graves discovered a hand painted sign featuring the logo from a previous business, Wolf's Bakery, under the cracking plaster on the south interior wall. It is a takeoff on the one for the bakery. The remains are still visible and intact on the wall inside the restaurant.

Menu[edit]

Chicken fingers at Raising Cane's

Raising Cane's offers a limited menu consisting of four main combos: "The Box Combo," "The 3-Finger Combo," "The Caniac Combo" and "The Sandwich Combo." It also includes a Kid's Meal and several sizes of bulk chicken items called Tailgates. [6]

Most of its restaurants use Coca-Cola as their primary soft drink supplier, but some, like Richmond, Virginia, use Pepsi. All of the restaurants do serve lemonade as well as iced tea.

Sauce[edit]

Cane's Sauce is provided with all chicken finger meals and is the signature sauce of the restaurant; customers may opt for Louisiana hot sauce and/or honey mustard sauce for free. Only managers at Cane's have access to the recipe. They are held to a confidentiality agreement regarding any details about the recipe, which features a mix of spices that come packaged to each restaurant.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "History" (PDF). 
  2. ^ "Todd Graves | Raising Cane's | Secret Millionaire | Chicken Fingers | Cane's Sauce". Raisingcanes.com. Retrieved May 29, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Star Local News > Plano Star-courier > News > Raising Cane's moves to Plano". Lewisvilleleader.com. November 12, 2008. Retrieved May 29, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Learn About Todd". raisingcanes.com. January 1, 2011. Retrieved January 31, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Todd Graves | Raising Cane's | Secret Millionaire | Chicken Fingers | Cane's Sauce". Raisingcanes.com. Retrieved May 29, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Our Menu". Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers. Retrieved October 22, 2014. 

External links[edit]