By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski | April 23, 2021
The 70-year-old California-based ice cream and burger franchise Fosters Freeze is coming to Glendale.
President and CEO Neal Dahya and Vice President of Brand Growth Nimesh Dahya are reigniting the brand by scouting locations within the city. This marks the first time the company is expanding outside of California, and it plans 19 other Valley locations.
“Fosters is known for its soft serve ice cream — vanilla, chocolate, dipped and twisters,” Neal says. “It’s ice cream with a variety of toppings. We also have our burgers, chicken sandwiches, hot dogs, onion rings and French fries.”
The Dahya brothers have worked with more than 180 restaurant franchise locations, with brands like Burger King, IHOP and Pizza Hut.
They purchased the franchise five years ago and have implemented a number of improvements, including reducing food costs to introducing new store designs.
Fosters Freeze has been a California tradition since the mid-1940s. The Fosters story began in 1946 when George Foster opened the first Fosters Freeze in Inglewood, California. He introduced the soft serve cone and a line of soft serve desserts.
The product became so popular that he opened a chain of restaurants. As California grew, so did the Fosters concept. Made-to-order hamburgers, fries and other food items were added to the menu.
“In 2015, we learned about the franchise,” Nimesh says. “It has a long legacy. Neal and I are located in California, so it’s the perfect fit. We have the knowledge to take this to another level.”
With 66 restaurants open for business, sales across the system have increased every year since the brothers arrived — including a 20% year-over-year jump, on top of five previous years of growth. While 2020 has presented its challenges, Fosters Freeze has seen success due to its small-footprint store model with walk-up windows perfect for low-contact takeout.
“We’re trying to grow strategically,” Nimesh says. “We don’t want to open all over the United States immediately.”
Fosters Freeze will soon see a more modern design, Neal says.
“We kept everything with a nostalgic feel,” he says. “It’s more futuristic and modern, though.”