hough KKC was founded in 1989, the company didn't see rapid growth until 17 years later. In 2006, the company exploded from 200 stores to its current 2,200, moving its footprint out of the Deep South during the nadir and recovery from the 2008 Financial Crisis. “The Recession became this period when you could really see the C-store trend take off,” Food News Media Editorial Director Sam Oches says.
“Customers traded down from fast food, but still wanted quality. C-stores were that next rung down," he adds. Most people were in dire financial straits but still needed to feed themselves. This growth was probably also helped by the coming of age of millennials during this time. This is a demographic that values cheap, quality fast food and KKC provides both.