Celebrity involvement with fast food brands has traditionally taken the form of: paid notes and ad views, but some household names have decided to expand their love of a restaurant chain and join the ownership team. Such is the case with rap superstar Drake, who has made an unnamed but apparently large investment in burgeoning fast food chain Dave’s Hot Chicken, according to Bloomberg.
Drake’s investment in the company makes him one of its largest shareholders, although at less than 50% he is still only a minority shareholder.
“I tried the food and it was amazing,” the rapper said in a statement. “After meeting the founders and hearing their stories, I seized the opportunity to invest.”
The chain was started by friends Dave Kopushyan, Arman Oganesyan and Tommy and Gary Rubenyan, who grew it from “a small stall in a parking lot in East Hollywood” to its current two dozen West Coast locations. The brand is now planning major growth and plans to add more than two dozen restaurants to its footprint by the end of the year. With the store expansion, the chain will also break new ground in new geographies, including Houston, Chicago and other new markets.
The Dave’s Hot Chicken Menu is refreshingly simple, with chicken tenders and chicken sliders offered as an appetizer and with sides currently limited to kale, mac and cheese, french fries, and cheese fries. The spiciness (or “Heat Level”) of the chicken can be adjusted from no seasoning to slightly mild, mild, medium, hot, extra hot, or reaper (the level of heat you will have a hard time surviving).
In addition to Drake, other notable investors in the chain include actor Samuel L. Jackson and Boston Red Sox chairman Tom Werner. Dave’s Hot Chicken is run by the same team behind successful chains as Blaze Pizza and Wetzel’s Pretzels.
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