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Culver’s Franchising System is a quick-service restaurant chain mainly located in the Midwestern United States mostly known for its “butterburgers” and frozen custard. The 965-unit chain, based out of Prairie du Sac, Wisc., has been family-owned since the first store opened in 1984.

Culver’s was founded in 1984 by George and Ruth Culver who started out their careers as owners of an A&W restaurant and opened the first Culver’s Frozen Custard and ButterBurgers

with their son and his wife, Craig and Lea. In 2017, Culver’s sold a minority interest to Atlanta-based private equity group Roark Capital, though the family still retains the majority share.

After Craig Culver retired as co-CEO in 2015, he was followed by Joe Koss, who announced his retirement in 2020. In Feb. 2021, Culver Franchising System LLC named Enrique "Rick" Silva as CEO, only the third CEO in the company’s history.

In 2019, Culver’s began elevating its menu with the introduction of the limited-time offering, the Pretzel Haus Pub Burger with Wisconsin cheese and buns, which won a MenuMasters award in 2019.

Key Data: Culver’s

Headquarters: Prairie du Sac, Wisc. 

Segment: Quick Service

Restaurant Segment: LSR Burger

Number of US locations: 788

2020 Sales: $1.7 million

Annual Growth:

Source: Datassential Firefly 500

CEO: Rick Silva