Shake Shack is a fast-casual burger chain founded in 2001 by Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group as a hot dog and frozen custard and shake stand in New York City’s Madison Square Park. It soon developed a cult following, particularly for its hamburgers, and the concept began expanding, first within New York City and then to other major urban centers. The chain went public in early 2015 and since then has expanded its offerings to include fried chicken sandwiches.
Meyer coined the term “fine casual” to describe Shake Shack because the chain sources the same quality of ingredients that his fine-dining restaurants buy, but sells them in a casual setting. The chain prides itself on responsible sourcing and supporting the communities in which it operates. It also has tested compostable cutlery and aluminum water bottles, which can be recycled more easily than plastic ones. Shake Shack also has set the goal of having gender parity in its leadership team by 2025 and, in that same year, to have half of its leadership be people of color.
Key data: Shake Shack
Headquarters: New York City
Restaurant Segment: LSR Burger
Number of U.S. Locations: 204
2020 Sales: $530.0 million
Source: Datassential Firefly 500
CEO: Randy Garutti