Rita’s Italian Ice® and The Melting Pot® hold licensee candidate meetings in February

Two Innovative U.S. Food Service Franchises Eye Australia

Rita’s Italian Ice® and The Melting Pot® will hold licensee candidate meetings in Sydney 5-6 February and in Melbourne 7-8 February.

The franchised food service market is saturated in Australia.
Two American franchisors are out to disprove this myth with a couple of niche food concepts that remain undiscovered in the Australian franchise world.

Fondue Makes a Comeback

To many people the word “fondue” conjures memories of shag carpets and disco balls. However, the Melting Pot has led the modern revival of fondue as a fun, interactive and surprisingly upscale dining experience. While fondue can be found as a quick dessert or a specialty menu at independent restaurant, The Melting Pot has taken fondue to the next level by franchising the ultimate four-course fondue dining experience.
The first Melting Pot opened in 1975. Today, with more than 150 locations across the US, Canada, Mexico, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and other Middle East countries, The Melting Pot is the world’s premier fondue restaurant franchise. With some its most successful restaurants in such markets as Florida, California, and Las Vegas NV, The Melting Pot clearly debunked the notion of fondue as simply a “cold-climate comfort food.”
At The Melting Pot, fondue truly becomes a memorable four-course dining experience where guests can dip into something different - and discover all the ingredients for a unique dining experience in a relaxed atmosphere, with private tables, attentive service, fine wines and signature fondue dinners.
The meal begins with a cheese course with a selection of six types of cheeses, which is followed by a salad—the only non-fondue course. Five types of salads are prepared with delicious dressings made in-house.
Guests then pick the perfect combination of meats, seafood and vegetables prepared with four different cooking styles, to dip in specialty sauces. Diners make the food right at the table, cooked in a broth based cooking style or in cholesterol-free oil.
The meal ends on a chocolate high, with The Melting Pot’s famous chocolate fondue, which includes a selection of dessert options with names such as Cookies & Cream, Flaming Turtle and Yin & Yang.
The Melting Pot’s cuisine is highly rated, including multiple awards from the American magazine, Wine Spectator. The Melting Pot has wide market appeal, attracting couples, families, business meetings and private events.
As a franchise concept, The Melting Pot does not require owners to have restaurant experience. Since all food is prepared by the guests at their tables, the restaurant requires no ovens, grills or deep fryers. The Melting Pot is seeking an exclusive Area Licensee for Australia. Initial capital requirements for a 5-unit Area License ranges from about AUD $2 million - $5 million up.

What You’ll Really Find on the Jersey Shore

The next time you’re walking down New Jersey’s Ocean City Boardwalk, or taking in a Broadway show, or touring Independence Hall in Philadelphia, ask a local person for a recommendation on a quick dessert place. It’s a good bet that they’ll point you to a small shop or kiosk with a large queue running down the street. That would be Rita’s®… and don’t worry, the queue moves along as a brisk rate.
There’s a good reason for that queue. In the 2012 Zagat’s Fast Food Survey, Rita’s® ranked #1 in the Top Food quality category, edging out Ben & Jerry’s and Haagen-Dazs. Their signature dessert is Italian Ice, known to their customers simply as “Rita’s Ice.” It is a unique alternative to ice cream and frozen yogurt that remains relatively undiscovered in markets where Rita’s has no presence.
Rita’s Italian Ice is much smoother than a snow cone and combines ice with real fresh fruit; made fresh daily at each location and served within 36-hours of mixing, and boasts over 30 diverse flavors for customers to explore. Adding to its popularity is the fact that it’s a much more health alternative to ice cream and most other frozen desserts, including a sugar-free Rita’s Ice, with about half the calories of traditional ice cream.
Rita’s also offers a range of other dessert options including frozen custard, milkshakes, gelati, cakes, as well as Rita’s unique trademarked desserts Misto®, Blendini® and Slenderita®.
Rita’s successful franchise growth is due in large part to their wide range of unit configurations, which scale from mobile carts to food court concessions to full-service stores. Rita’s easily fits into many venues, including retail shopping areas, malls, entertainment parks, sports stadiums and even private events. This enables Rita’s franchisees to scale with relatively low capital requirements. With approximately 580 franchises, the investment required for a single unit U.S. Rita’s franchise ranges from about AUD $100,000 to $325,000.
In Australia, Rita’s is seeking a national Master Franchisee or an Area Licensee with minimum commitment of 10 units. Qualified candidates would have approximately AUD $450,000 to $750,000 in available capital, with marketing talent and food service experience.

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The Melting Pot and Rita’s are represented by franchise management firm EGS LLC., based in California. To arrange a meeting in Sydney on 5-6 February or in Melbourne 7-8 February, contact the EGS representative in Melbourne:
Grant Garraway
The Franchise Shop
Tel: 1300 139 557
Email: grant@thefranchiseshop.com