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Now Available: Vintage 2021 Local Population and Housing Unit Estimates


Fast Food Restaurants Lead Franchised Businesses in Employment

Release Number CB16-TPS.17

Franchised limited-service restaurants (NAICS 722513), sometimes called fast-food restaurants, employed 2.6 million people in 2012 and had sales of $129.2 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau reports. New car dealers (NAICS 441110), an industry solely comprised of franchises, employed 973,745 people and had sales of $672.5 billion in 2012.

The 2012 Economic Census Franchise Report is only the second comprehensive and detailed report by the Census Bureau on this segment of the U.S. economy, with the first being released for the 2007 Economic Census. The report presents data for selected industries on the number of businesses with paid employees engaged in franchising, annual sales for these businesses, and employment and payroll. These data are broken out by industry in three categories: franchisor-owned businesses, franchisee-owned businesses and all businesses.

The data are primarily national level, although state-level statistics are provided for limited-service restaurants and full-service restaurants (NAICS 722511).

Other highlights:

  • Franchises accounted for almost three-quarters (73.3 percent) of all employment by limited-service restaurants.
  • Texas accounted for 10.5 percent of all limited-service restaurant franchise employment in the U.S. California accounted for 9.5 percent.
  • Franchises for full-service restaurants (NAICS 722511) employed 879,771 people.
  • Sales for other major franchise industries include gasoline stations with convenience stores (NAICS 447110) with sales of $158.1 billion and hotels (except casinos) and motels (NAICS 721110) with sales of $51.6 billion for franchise establishments.

All dollar values are expressed in current dollars, i.e., they are not adjusted for price changes. The statistics presented include data only for businesses with paid employees. For more information about the economic census (including information on comparability, confidentiality protection, sampling error, nonsampling error and definitions), see

No news release associated with this report. Tip Sheet only.



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