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First Watch

First Watch is a breakfast, lunch and brunch restaurant concept founded in 1983 in Pacific Grove, Calif. The goal was to offer workers a better quality of life with no night shifts. In 1986, First Watch partner Ken Pendery moved the chain’s headquarters to Florida.

While owned by private-equity firm Freeman Spogli & Co., the company grew aggressively, acquiring The Egg & I chain in 2015 after it had already purchased The Good Egg, and Bread & Company, along with two J. Christopher’s locations. First Watch was acquired by the private-equity firm Advent International in 2017.

In 2020, the chain added cocktails to the menu for the first time.

Key Data: First Watch

Headquarters: Bradenton, Fla.

Segment: Midscale Dining

Restaurant segment: FSR Midscale

Number of U.S. locations: 377

2020 Sales: $403.4 million

Annual Growth:

Source: Datassential Firefly 500

CEO:  Christopher Tomasso

Parent: Advent International