Food franchise in Korea has long been saturated. According to a report, 80% of chicken restaurants in particular close business within 3 years of opening. Yet people still jump into this national 'Chimaek' - chicken & beer - fever and the competition shows no sign of slowing down. So the uniqueness of the business often counts enormously to survive or die.
What makes Chicken University different from others is at its unique name. Secondly, dinners become 'students' and the staff 'teaching assistant' and the restaurant 'the university' or 'class room' if you like.
Instead of 'open' or 'close' sign, you can see 'course open'. Pass the university gate and you will be welcomed by the chancellor called 'zzimchidak'. You then look through the subjects (menu) and enroll (order) a course or more. At completing your course, you will be instantly given a 1,000 won scholarship (discount).
Try on Monday and Wednesday for additional fun of bingo and other events on which you can get a student ID that will give you a further discount on your next enrollment.
This unique character of the restaurant has called media attention home and abroad: KBS Live Info Show and SBS Special (Korea), Nippon TV (Japan) and Yidianzixun (China).
Menu-wise, you can enjoy 5 kinds of chicken themed menus at one order: zzimdak (spicy stew and soy sauce stew), fried, stir-fried, ramen and rice. If you do not know what to order, go straight for 'zzimchidak', the hottest menu of all.
Culture-wise, Chicken University exhibits art works on the walls of the restaurant or invites artists to give a performance regardless genres. Part of the profits generated from this goes to the artists under the CCP (Change Chicken Project). What makes it more fun is that the artists come and do an instant busking out of the blue or you are suddenly led to a treasure hunt. All these fun events are enjoyed at all 12 chain restaurants.
Business-wise, you are welcome to join the wagon. CEO Im is a man of family and fair trade. You should not be mistreated or unfairly treated because you are a franchisee. It might sound dumb-founding but Im pursues 'value' more than profit from this business; the value for win-win, the value for culture and the value for fun.
Just pop in the restaurant and experience yourself these fun ideas and vibrating ambience over 'chimaek' or more preferably 'zzimchidak'. Flagship restaurant is found on the way to Sookmyung Women's University.
이승호 기자 email@example.com