Subway is adding something big to its menu

Subway is adding something big to its menu

New York

Subway’s long sandwiches finally match the sides — and the company hopes the new menu items will help with its transformation efforts.

The chain is giving a major (literally) update to its menu with the addition of three 12-inch snacks consisting of a chocolate chip cookie, a Cinnabon Churro, and a soft pretzel from Auntie Anne’s. Yes, they’re all foot long (and served hot).

The permanent sides, called Subway Sidekicks, will be available across the US starting January 22. Prices will vary depending on the market, but the suggested price for a churro is $2, a pretzel is $3 and a cookie is $5.

Sidekicks represent an entirely new menu category for Subway, which is famous for its sandwiches. The additions come from customers who order more from the menu, according to Douglas Fry, Subway’s North American president.

“We did it because we got feedback from our guests that they could come in and eat their favorite sandwich, but they wanted to have other reasons,” Fry told CNN. “Grazing and snacking are on the rise, especially with our core consumers.”

Another benefit of the subway, In conclusion, Customers are adding the new items to their sandwich purchases — a departure from the chain that initially thought customers would just come in to get the sides themselves, Fry said. In their tests, about half of customers added Sidekick to their purchases.

Value was also a factor in launching Sidekicks, Fry said. “These foot-long snacks come at a great price. We’re going to see some great progress and excitement from campus…which is ultimately what we’re after as we grow the Subway brand.”

David Henkes, a senior director at Technomic, said adding Sidekicks “makes sense,” telling CNN that Subway needs to raise revenue somewhere since fast-food customers are starting to back away from price increases amid inflation.

“They’ve been underperforming in the sandwich segment, so they need to shake things up a bit and stimulate some additional traffic,” Hincks said. Technical data shows that Subway is also lagging in sales of side dishes and snacks compared to its competitors.

The chain has undergone a transformation in essentially all aspects of its business after struggling in recent years as competition intensifies and as the nearly 60-year-old brand declines in popularity with customers.

As part of its transformation efforts, the company has added personalization to its menu, doubled down on pushing orders to its app, increased its international presence, and recently introduced fresh cut meats — a major shift from Subway’s previous method of pre-delivering cold cuts. sliced.

The reforms have been largely successful, although the private company does not issue its financial reports regularly. Most recently, in July 2023, the company reported its 10th straight quarter of positive sales at stores open at least a year, including a 9.5% increase at its North American locations (it did not disclose specific numbers).

Despite the turnaround in sales, the number of Subway stores in the U.S. fell to 20,576 in 2022 according to Technomic. This is a sharp decline from its peak in 2015 when it had 27,219 sites.

Annual sales at Subway restaurants in the United States are still significantly lower compared to its sandwich competitors. QSR Magazine data reveals that its three main competitors: Jersey Mike’s, Firehouse Subs and Jimmy John’s, It makes about $1 million per unit, with the average income for the metro location being less than $500,000.

Last August, Subway sold itself to private equity firm Roark Capital for an undisclosed price, ending the sandwich chain that had run for nearly six decades as a family-owned business.

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