Taco Bell Announces U.S. Expansion Plans

Yum Brands Inc. (NYSE:YUM) subsidiary Taco Bell has announced an ambitious expansion plan for the United States over the next six years. Taco Bell plans to grow to a network of 9,000 U.S. locations and create 100,000 new jobs by 2022. Brian Niccol, chief executive of Taco Bell, said in a statement, “Our planned growth over the next six years is going to help us reach $15 billion in global system sales by 2022.”

Currently, there are nearly 7,000 Taco Bell restaurants across the nation. Those locations employ 40,000 people working in company-owned stores and 170,000 employees at franchise restaurants. Greg Creed, Yum Brands chief executive, said the company is on track for about 300 new restaurant launches this year.

In July, Taco Bell announced that it will open a flagship restaurant on the Las Vegas Strip. The new restaurant will feature an outdoor patio, open kitchen layout, and sharable menu items. It will also serve alcohol and remain open 24 hours a day. Taco Bell is considering adding additional locations in Atlanta, New York, and Boston.

Taco Bell recently launched its “Start with Us, Stay with Us” program, which focuses on attracting and retaining talent. Frank Tucker, Chief People Officer at Taco Bell, said, “We understand that Taco Bell is a first job for a lot of people.” The company wants to help employees transition into the careers that they desire, both inside and outside of the company. In the last year alone, Taco Bell says it has promoted more than 2,000 company store employees into management roles.

The company also offers education programs to help participants earn high school and college diplomas. The company encourages employees to take advantage of the programs offered no matter how long they’ve been with, or plan to stay with, the company. Taco Bell has also partnered with Roadtrip Nation to document the stories and career paths of current and previous employees of Taco Bell. Tucker said, “It’s often a job that kickstarts someone’s career and future success, so we’re excited to team up with Roadtrip Nation to inspire and show our team members how these invaluable skills can get them to their highest aspirations in life.”