Wendy's surpasses the King

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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Despite having over 1,300 locations more than Wendy's, Burger King bumped down to the number three ranking of United States hamburger chains. In 2011, Wendy's sales came out on top with $8.5 billion with Burger King close behind at $8.4 billion.

Wendy's international headquarters
Image: Nick Juhasz. (2007).

Wendy's edged Burger King out of the number two spot for the first time since Dave Thomas founded the company in 1969.

McDonald's still holds the number one spot, squashing both Wendy's and Burger King with sales of more than $34 billion from 14,098 U.S. locations. Around the globe, Burger King clutches onto the number two ranking among hamburger joints.

Since 2006, the restaurant business has had a make-over in the top five competitors. According to Technomic, the top three restaurant chains used to be comprised entirely of hamburger chains: including McDonalds, Burger King and Wendy's, respectively. Today, Subway is ranked second with $11.4 billion — a 48 percent jump, with Starbucks right behind with $9.8 billion — a 39 percent jump.

According to Technomic, Five Guys Burgers and Fries is creeping up on the other chains by making the largest leap last year.