In 1952, Keith Cramer owned a carhop restaurant in Daytona Beach, FL. He flew out to California, on the advice of his stepfather, Matthew Burns, to see the most recent advancement in restaurants at the time — McDonald’s.
Cramer was impressed with the speed and automation and then he and Burns acquired the rights to George Read’s Miracle Insta-Machines. These were Rube Goldberg-type devices created to make fast food really fast. One of the models made multiple milk shakes while the other, known as the Insta-Broiler, could cook twelve burgers simultaneously. Four hundred burgers could be cooked in an hour with one machine.
In 1953, Cramer opened his Burger King in Jacksonville and named it following the cooker — Insta-Burger King. His burgers sold for 18 cents apiece (McDonald’s burgers during the time were 15 cents each) plus they were a great success.
Two franchisers, James McLamore and David R. Edgerton, Jr., liked the concept and launched several Insta-Burger King restaurants in Miami in 1954. Fortunately — since you will see — they failed.
So McLamore and Edgerton begun to experiment. Soon they completely got rid of the Insta-Broiler and created
an identical flame broiler — which made their renamed Burger King famous. They also introduced a lot larger burger, the Whopper, of course, and sold it for 37 cents. This is considered a very risky business move at that time but, as you may know, it paid back handsomely. It became their signature product along with their tag-line became “Burger King, Home of the Whopper.”
They soon acquired the Insta-Burger Kings, renamed them and refitted them for his or her new releases. They began to massively franchise in 1961 and shortly their new restaurants were around Florida and all of those other nation.
Burger King was the very first fast food hamburger joint to put in indoor eating areas at their outlets — in 1967, per year before McDonald’s did the same. Pillsbury acquired the chain in 1967 and began a tremendous promotional campaign. The slogans and jingles — including the well-known “Get it Your Way” — were a massive success and Burger King grew for the number 2 burger restaurant in the world. By 2004, Burger King had a lot more than 11,000 outlets in 61 countries and territories worldwide, including 7,000 in america.
The ownership of Burger King however changed hands again as well as the strict policies were not followed which resulted in financial ruin and straining associations in between the franchises. After almost 18 years without financial growth, the skloxs from the company began feeling the results of the stagnating franchises. AmeriKing filed for bankruptcy in 2001 which caused the depreciation from the fast food chain by nearly $750 million during its sale.
The new CEO, Bradely Blum began a restructuring program that was aimed to bring back almost 20% of franchises undergoing financial hardships. It had been an initiative that encouraged individual owners who took advantage of the situation buying the failed stores and turning them into profit makers. A majority of the once failing stores are growing and at the end of the 2010 fiscal year, Burger King happy hour claimed to get more than 12,200 outlets in 73 countries. 90% of the outlets in america are privately operated and operated.