Annual report pursuant to Section 13 and 15(d)

Note 9 - Franchise Operations

Note 9 - Franchise Operations
12 Months Ended
Dec. 25, 2022
Notes to Financial Statements  
Franchise Income [Text Block]

(9) Franchise Operations


The Company franchises Ruth’s Chris Steak House restaurants. The Company executes franchise agreements for each franchisee-owned restaurant, which sets out the terms of its arrangement with the franchisee. The franchise agreements typically require the franchisee to pay an initial, non-refundable fee and continuing fees based upon a percentage of sales. The Company collects ongoing royalties of 5% of sales at franchisee-owned restaurants plus a 1% advertising fee applied to national advertising expenditures. The Company recognizes sales-based royalties when the royalties are due from the franchisee on a monthly basis. These ongoing royalties are reflected in the accompanying consolidated statements of operations as franchise income. The Company records advertising contributions from franchisees as franchise income on the consolidated statement of operations. 


The Company executes area development agreements with franchisees that gives each franchisee exclusive rights to develop a specific number of restaurants within a specified area. The Company receives a development fee at the time that an area development agreement is executed. The Company now recognizes franchise development over the life of the applicable franchise agreements. The Company also executes separate, site-specific franchise agreements for each restaurant developed by a franchisee under an area development agreement. The Company charges a site-specific fee at the time the franchise agreement is executed. This fee is related to construction assistance and consulting regarding operating procedures and purchasing. These services are performed prior to the restaurant opening. These site-specific franchise fees are recognized as revenue over the life of the applicable franchise agreements where the franchisee is deemed to benefit from the franchise agreement evenly over the life of the agreement.


The Company currently has 74 franchisee-owned Ruth’s Chris Steak House restaurants, including 23 international restaurants.  In fiscal year 2022 one franchisee-owned restaurant was relocated within Wilmington, NC. In fiscal year 2021, two new franchisee-owned restaurants were opened in Manila, Philippines and Changsha, China. In fiscal year 2020 no new franchisee-owned restaurants were opened however one franchisee-owned restaurant was located within Chesterfield, MO. Franchise income includes opening and development fees and income generated from existing franchisee-owned restaurants. The Company classifies franchise income separately in the consolidated statements of operations (in thousands):



Fiscal Year








Franchise income:


Income from existing franchise locations

  $ 20,496     $ 18,533     $ 11,663  

Opening, closing and development fee income

    75             74  

Total franchise income:

  $ 20,571     $ 18,533     $ 11,737