Burger & Sauce Logo

Interview with Saad Masood, Founder

July 5, 2022

Pictured (left to right): Antony Round, Franchise Director, Saad Masood, Founder and Subhan Munir, Franchisee

Tell me about your background?

I’ve worked in the fast food or quick service restaurant industry for over ten years. I was involved in helping develop the Pepe’s brand before becoming a franchisee running five stores. However, in 2019, I decided to capitalise on my experience, creativity and ideas to set up my own brand. I sold my Pepe’s franchised stores and soon after, Burger & Sauce was born!

How did Burger & Sauce come about?

I started Burger & Sauce right in the middle of the Pandemic. I wanted to create a successful business, so I knew I needed to focus on what sells. The number one selling fast food item across the world is the humble burger! It has a universal appeal and I saw a gap in the market for an affordable, fresh and tasty burger sold in a super welcoming environment.

My wife Zenarahim, who also worked in the food industry for ten years, created the original sauce to go with our fresh burgers and is now in charge of our menu development.

Our restaurants now give customers an experience they will love every day. Fresh, fresh, fresh is our motto! Burger & Sauce was quick to take off and our first restaurant turned over £1.5 million in its first year.  We now have four franchised stores operating successfully and exceeding targets with up to fifteen more due to open before the end of 2023.

Why do you think Burger & Sauce has been so successful so far and what makes the brand different?

As a management team we are focused on the long-term growth of the brand. We invest back into the business to drive this expansion.

We are also focused on research and development. We are constantly introducing new recipes to keep our customers engaged and to ensure our broad appeal!

For example, we regularly have limited time (three month) offers. Most recently these have included the ‘Angus Beef Stack’: premium angus beef topped with double cheese, pickles, lettuce, tomato finished with caramelised onions and choice of sauce. We have also introduced the Club Range – a smaller burger made with the same finest ingredients available at a lower price point, plus the new Chicken Burger: 'Firecracker' which is topped with a cheese slice, cheese sauce, spicy sauce and flamin' hot cheetos.

Innovation is also key. This is not just in our menu selection, but also in optimising the running of franchised stores. We have developed a digital app to limit paperwork. iPads at every kitchen station mean orders are distributed to the right team members. It makes processes smooth and easy for the whole team. We also use tech for the ordering of supplies and the due diligence of regular store checks like correct storage temperatures for example. 

Tell me about the people behind Burger & Sauce?

I am the founder of the brand and I’m supported by my wife Zenarahim who looks after menu innovation. Anthony Round is our Franchise Director and responsible for working with new franchisees joining our team. Anthony has many years’ experience in franchising and helps us put in place the right processes so new franchisees joining Burger & Sauce get off to a great start. We also have a marketing and PR specialist on the team too, as well as people responsible for back-office admin.

What’s been the greatest challenge so far and how have you overcome this?

With Brexit, the war in Ukraine and rising costs following the Pandemic, the number one challenge any QSR business currently faces is managing the supply chain. We have overcome this by avoiding the big wholesale companies and instead, working with local suppliers who stock 99% of the ingredients we need. They are far more driven to support us, availability is better, and we can buy superior quality.

Many people might think that labour would be a challenge, but we don’t find this too much of an issue.  Our processes and investment in technology make the restaurants very easy to run, so staff are happy and stay with us. We also aim to promote from within. For example, one of our franchisees is currently working with several team members, to train them to become new store managers as he expands.

What’s your secret to success?

I like to think that it’s because I look to the future! I’m always working to improve the way our restaurants operate from the supply chain, to working with aggregators, to taking advantage of the latest technology for the benefit of our franchisees. I’m fuelled by enthusiasm and energy to grow the brand and as someone who ‘makes it happen’ I trust this drive combined with my experience and vision will be a recipe for success.

We are also investing ahead of the curve in the right people to support development and the growth of our franchisees which is incredibly important.

Tell me about Burger & Sauce’s customers?

Everyone loves a burger! Our menu is designed to appeal to a broad range of customers from eight to 88! We have recently added snack options, smaller burgers, wings and sides so there is something for everyone. Customers can eat in, take away or we can deliver to their door.

How do you follow trends in the market?

We are constantly engaged in new menu development and test many different recipes to create the very best, affordable and tasty burgers. However, market trends don’t just mean menu selection. There is also a growing trend for customers ordering through aggregators for example. While some brands view them as a ‘necessary evil’ we have cultivate relationships. For example, we have a national deal with UberEATS which makes Burger & Sauce a priority on their platform. We have created a win-win-win: for customers’ ease of ordering, more visible marketing for our franchisees and this is great for UberEATS too.

What’s your goal for the future?

Our goal is to become a household name for fresh, tasty, affordable convenience food.

How do you plan to achieve this goal?

It’s a big ambition! However, by thinking big we can achieve great things. There will be multiple elements which all come together to create growth and develop our vision. These include the experience of the team, the uniqueness of the Burger & Sauce product and our approach to innovation.

We ultimately aim to promote the brand and our signature sauce sold through supermarkets. All our plans are long-term to support the vision of Burger & Sauce becoming a household name and we now welcome new franchisees to join us in achieving our mission.

For more information about franchising with Burger & Sauce please see:  www.burgerandsauce.com

Article first published by Franchise Direct July 2022