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Franchise Information

About Cantina Laredo

Cantina Laredo Background
Inspired by consumers’ growing taste for more authentic flavors, Cantina Laredo offers a menu that evokes the sophisticated gourmet tastes of Mexico City. From the day the first Cantina Laredo opened in 1984, guests have enthusiastically embraced our concept. Critics have praised us as well. An authoritative Dallas magazine named Cantina Laredo one of the 12 best restaurants in the city. The reviewer noted, “… the food outshines anything I’ve had on trips across the border.”
Over the last 20 years we have devoted great effort to product development and process improvements to ensure that we always deliver the highest level of great Mexican food to our guests. Combining the traditional with modern flairs, the menu is unique and includes grilled fish, chicken and steaks complimented by signature sauces such as chipotle-wine with portobello mushrooms or sautéed artichoke hearts and roasted red bell peppers.

Cantina Laredo Today

Today, Cantina Laredo is our company’s fastest growing concept. We are opening corporate and franchise units throughout the country. The high-end Mexican segment is poised for large growth and we are the leader in this space. As the Ft Myers News-Press noted in a highly positive review, “Cantina Laredo is to Mexican what P.F. Chang’s is to Chinese.”
There are a number of cultural and demographics factors that are driving the growth of sophisticated, authentic Mexican and Latin cuisine. In the United States, the Hispanic population is expanding substantially and this demographic event has significantly influenced mainstream dining preferences. Not only are there a growing number of upscale Mexican and Latin restaurants but also grocery stores are devoting increasing shelf space to Latin inspired products that cater to both Anglo and Hispanic markets. A stunning example is that salsa has replaced ketchup as America’s best selling condiment.
Mass media and ease of international travel have also contributed to the fact that American’s tastes are more worldly. With affordable vacation packages to all parts of the world and the popularity of numerous food and cooking magazines and television shows, our society has embraced the tastes found in authentic ethnic cooking.
Cantina Laredo is well positioned to profit from these trends. Our growth is fueled by consistently excellent food and service that meets the market’s demand for high quality, world-class cuisine.


Initial Franchise Fee
The initial franchise fee is $50,000 per restaurant.

Development Fee (if you choose to develop multiple units in an exclusive geographic area)
The development fee is individually negotiated for each geographic area based on a variety of factors, including the number and location of Franchised Restaurants to be developed, an evaluation of market conditions such as market penetration of Franchised Restaurants and Company-Owned Restaurants, the area’s size, population, and per capita income, and other demographic and psychographic data.

Royalty Fee
The continuing royalty fee is 5% of gross sales.

Cantina Laredo Franchise Cost Estimates

Low High
Franchise Fee $50,000 $50,000
Land and Site Preparation $250,000 $950,000
Construction Costs, Signs, and Landscaping $800,000 $1,100,000
Organizational (permits, licenses, insurance, etc) $100,000 $200,000
Furniture, Fixtures, and Equipment $375,000 $475,000
Kitchen Equipment $300,000 $375,000
Opening Inventory and Pre-Opening Expenses $100,000 $150,000
Additional Funds $50,000 $75,000
Training $85,000 $190,000
subtotal $2,110,000 $3,565,000
Tenant Improvement Allowance $250,000 $1,000,000
Net Investment $1,860,000 $2,565,000

*The estimated range of costs are intended only as a general guide. While these estimated numbers are derived from actual experiences, every location is unique and every jurisdiction and opportunity will present different challenges and expenses.


Cantina Laredo is part of an organization with 65 years of restaurant experience and 35 years of franchise experience. We operate over 100 company owned restaurants and 25 franchise restaurants in 18 states and Canada. These decades of experience as a restaurant operator and franchisor enable us to offer our single-unit and multi-unit franchisees the highest level of support. The following are services we offer our franchisees:

Site Selection
We are ready to assist you in locating a site for your Cantina Laredo restaurant. Over the years we have developed site selection criteria you can use as a guideline in locating your new restaurant. While we do not select your site for you, we will be available to consult with you based on our experience in selecting sites for our own units. We will review your site choices and help you make an evaluation based on building criteria, market area, site characteristics and access.

We provide a set of restaurant plans and will work with you to develop a layout to fit the particular characteristics of your site. Our construction personnel can visit your site and offer recommendations for necessary modifications. We can also assist you with remodeling enhancement programs, equipment specifications, source lists, document/permit review and design review.

We understand the value of consistent and comprehensive training standards. Our Training Department has developed a detailed and extensive program to prepare your management team to run the restaurant.

At our management training facility in Dallas, Texas, we will provide your management team with training on how to run your Cantina Laredo restaurant. In addition to classroom instruction, there is hands-on front and back of the house training in a corporate restaurant. We have also developed training programs for your employees that cover all aspects of operating your restaurant from food preparation techniques to service standards.

We will send a team of experienced trainers prior to your opening to train all new crew members. They will provide hands-on training during the opening for both the front and back of the house. The training team will remain on-site after the restaurant opens as a support unit for the management team.

As part of our ongoing commitment to quality service, we continue to upgrade and refine our training program as new training methods become available to us. As part of the Cantina Laredo system, you will have all these materials available to you. Our philosophy is that proper training is one of the key ingredients to your success as a Cantina Laredo franchisee.

Operational Support
The Cantina Laredo Operations Manual provides operating procedures and policies to help you run your restaurant. We will provide you with recipes, manuals and materials covering food preparation, portioning and service.

Our Operations Department gives you help where you need it – in your restaurant. A Franchise Operations Consultant with years of restaurant management experience will be on-hand to help you with your opening. Your consultant will continue to support you and your management team with periodic in-store visits to help you analyze your operations, provide new product training and update your management team on new procedures to maximize your operations.

The Purchasing Department negotiates services and price agreements with approved suppliers and distributors. You will be provided the systems and products that are identified as the approved core menu to create brand alignment and to leverage the purchasing power of our company.

Information Technology/POS Support
The IT Department offers comprehensive POS support starting with setup and installation. On an ongoing basis, we can provide POS Hotline support, software database changes and hardware depot services.

Marketing and Advertising
The Cantina Laredo Marketing Department’s mission is to create top-of-mind awareness while building the brand image in each of the communities we serve. Marketing campaigns are developed to support the overall positioning of the Cantina Laredo brand. Marketing supports these objectives by developing and executing electronic media advertising, local store marketing programs, print programs, promotions and point of purchase merchandising. These marketing tools are made available to our franchisees as they are developed.


Site Guidelines

  • High visibility end cap and freestanding locations approximately 6,500 square feet, located no more than 100 feet from the main road.
  • Sources for strong lunch and dinner business: trade area mix of offices, hotels and retail with surrounding upscale residential.
  • Median HH incomes in the top 20% for the MSA.
  • 15,000 or more households with household income above $125,000.
  • Per capita incomes 30% greater than MSA average.
  • Strong co-tenancy consisting of high-end retail, entertainment venues such as movie theaters, daily needs and/or lifestyle centers.
  • Minimum of 30,000 vehicles per day along the main frontage road.
  • In-line locations will be considered if they meet the above criteria and are not more than 50 feet from the road, have signage clearly visible to passing traffic and exceptionally strong co-tenancy of shopping center.
  • Maximum signage as allowed by code with ability to secure tenant panel shopping center signage and/or individual monument sign.
  • The ability to incorporate patios awnings and umbrellas adjacent to the premises

Utility Guidelines

  • HVAC – One ton per 100 sq. ft.
  • Make up air and exhaust shaft to accommodate Type 1 Hood
  • Electrical – 800-amp service at 120/208V-3P-4W
  • 6-inch Sanitary Sewer and appropriately-sized grease interceptor as required by local code
  • 3-inch Plumbing vent stack and ability to vent directly through the roof
  • 2-inch Water line with separate meter to the premises
  • 3 mil. BTU natural gas line capacity.
  • Meet all ADA requirements for all means of ingress/egress

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