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Marble Slab Franchises: is it Worth Investing $982K? 2023 Stats

Another popular ice cream franchise along with Bruster’s, Rita’s or the giants Baskin Robbins and Dairy Queen, Marble Slab Creamery is a serious contender.

Indeed, with 370 ice cream parlors across the US and a $1.1 million turnover per year per store on average, it’s a very good opportunity if you want to get into the ice cream franchise business.

But is it really worth the cost? Keep in mind you would have to invest $983,000 upfront to open a new Marble Slab Creamery shop.

In this article we’ll tell you everything you should know about Marble Slab Creamery franchises: how much it costs, how much profits you can make with this business. More importantly, we’ll see you whether you should go ahead and buy the franchise. Let’s dive out!

Marble Slab franchises: key figures

Franchise fee$25,000
Royalty fee6.0%
Marketing fee4.0%
Investment (mid-point)$407,000
Average sales$251,000
Sales to investment ratio0.6x
Payback period*11 years
Minimum net worth$250,000
Minimum liquid capital$100,000
* using 15% net profit margin
Marble Slab Creamery business plan template

Download the Marble Slab Creamery franchise business plan

📗 Updated with Franchise Disclosure Document

📊 5-year pro forma financial model

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What is Marble Slab Creamery?

Marble Slab Creamery is an American chain of ice cream shops owned by FAT Brands, which also owns Round Table Pizza, Great America Cookies, Pretzel Makers, and Hot Dog on a Stick and is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia.

It was founded in 1983 in Houston by chefs Sigmund Penn and Tom LePage.

The brand serves homemade ice cream and a variety of other desserts, including ice cream cakes, sundaes, milkshakes, and smoothies. It began franchising in 1984 and now has over 370 restaurants in the US.

Marble Slab franchises: pros and cons


  • Pre-opening training: The brand has an extensive training program to equip its franchisees with quality training about the brand and its procedures. They offer them initial training of 30 hours of classroom training and 9 hours of on-site training, as well as ongoing training. This ensures a successful grand opening, hospitality, staff management, and smooth operations.
  • Multiple revenue streams: The brand emphasizes nontraditional franchise formats in high-traffic locations such as bowling alleys, arcades, movie theaters, military bases, stadiums, theme parks, ski resorts, casinos, convenience stores, campuses, airports, and food halls. Franchisees can attract a lot of traffic and improve their profitability.
  • Marketing support: With an experienced marketing strategy, franchisees can efficiently enhance their local stores’ awareness and publicity. Marble Slab Creamery provides franchisees with turnkey marketing tools and strategies such as national media, regional advertising, influencer marketing, digital marketing, and targeted local market plans to get their products in front of a wide audience.
  • Real estate support: The brand helps its franchisees with site selection and lease negotiation. Franchisees can get expert advice on viable business locations in terms of local trends and optimize store designs and construction to minimize the cost of establishing their restaurants.
  • Purchasing power: Franchisees can enjoy economies of scale by riding on the brand’s popularity and high purchasing power. They enjoy strong vendor relationships and a central online supply chain to consistently get quality supplies and inventory
  • Co-branding opportunities: Marble Slab Creameries offers franchisees co-branding opportunities with other concepts in the GFG portfolio, such as Great American Cookies. Franchisees can explore multi-unit restaurant ownership at a low cost while maintaining their customer base.


  • No exclusive territory protection: Marble Slab Creamery does not offer franchisees exclusive territory protection. Franchisees may face competition from franchises granted by the parent company or from competitive brands it controls.
  • No financing: The franchisor does not directly or indirectly finance its franchisees. It also does not guarantee any lease, note, or grant on behalf of its franchisees.
  • No absentee ownership: The Marble Slab Creamery franchise does not offer franchisees a passive investment opportunity. They must be fully involved in the day-to-day operations and decision-making of their restaurants.

How much does a Marble Slab franchise cost?

On average, you may need to invest around $407,360 to open a Marble Slab Creamery restaurant.

The investment amount is an average, thus, can change depending on various factors. Type of the restaurant is one of the most important factors. Indeed, Marble Slab Creamery offers 2 types of restaurants:

  • Single store ($316,285-$409,935): a single Marble Slab Creamery franchise store
  • Co-brand store ($389,285-$513,935):  you have a choice to operate a Great American Cookies franchise or other brands along with the Marble Slab Creamery store 

What are you paying for?

The investment covers all the startup costs you would need to open a typical restaurant. In addition to an initial franchise fee ($15,000 – $30,000), you are paying for:

  • Formation costs: architectural fees, furniture, fixtures, equipment, decor, signs, leasehold improvements, professional fees, business licenses, permits, computer system, etc.
  • Initial marketing: grand opening marketing
  • Operating costs: prepaid rent, opening inventory, utility deposits, first 3 months insurance and working capital, etc.
Type of costLowHigh
Initial Franchise Fee$15,000$35,000
Formation Costs$345,650$436,300
Initial marketing$3,000$5,000
Operating Costs$25,635$37,635
Source: Franchise Disclosure Document
Marble Slab Creamery business plan template

Download the Marble Slab Creamery franchise business plan

📗 Updated with Franchise Disclosure Document

📊 5-year pro forma financial model

📞 Free support

What’s the turnover of a Marble Slab restaurant?

On average, a Marble Slab Creamery franchise makes $251,052 in sales per year. This is the annual median sales of 198 franchises operating in 2020.

The sales number is an average for both the single and the co-brand stores. As it is an average, you may see a difference in sales depending on the type of restaurant you choose. For example, a co-brand store generates twice as much revenue than a single store. 

Type of storeStoresMedian sales
Single Store128$191,327
Co-Brand Store70$360,261
Source: Franchise Disclosure Document

What about seasonality?

As you would imagine, ice cream stores are seasonal businesses. Sales tend to be much higher over summer. Now, disregarding the impact of the pandemic in April and May, this is how monthly turnover looked like in 2020:

How much profits can you make with a Marble Slab franchise?

We estimate that an average Marble Slab Creamery franchise makes $70,295 in profits per year. This represents a profit margin of 28% of sales (adjusted EBITDA margin).

The 28% adjusted EBITDA margin is on the higher end compared to similar franchises as per our intelligence (~25-27% industry average). 

Note that to calculate this number we had to use the industry average for COGS (25% sales) and labor costs (29%), and rent (8%). Unfortunately, like some other franchisors, Marble Slab Creamery doesn’t disclose any financial information regarding costs on their FDD. 

Profit-and-lossAmount% sales
Royalty + marketing fees$(25,105)10.0%
Adjusted EBITDA$70,295~28%
* industry average
Marble Slab Creamery business plan template

Download the Marble Slab Creamery franchise business plan

📗 Updated with Franchise Disclosure Document

📊 5-year pro forma financial model

📞 Free support

How does it compare vs. other franchises?

FranchiseInvestment ($)Sales ($)Payback (years)Min. net worth ($)Min. liquid capital ($)
Dunkin' Donuts,0001,056,5211.44.9500,000250,000
Krispy Kreme,0003,400,0004.11.62,000,000300,000
Little Caesars,022,850798,1130.88.5350,000150,000
Steak 'n Shake, Milshakes815,6261,346,3321.74.01,500,000500,000
Crumbl Cookies,2241,582,0903.12.1300,000150,000
Taco Bell,4131,650,0003.61.91,500,000750,000
Smoothie King,108573,2690.88.0300,000100,000
Jersey Mike's,3231,220,5862.14.7300,000100,000
Nothing Bundt Cakes,6501,307,2802.42.7600,000150,000
Jimmy John's,650874,8451.73.9300,00080,000
Texas Roadhouse,209,5002,955,5340.79.5n.a.200,000
Kung Fu Tea tea250,125353,2371.44.7n.a.25,000
Burger King,242,9501,215,9701.06.81,500,000500,000
Sonic Drive-In,467,0831,617,0001.16.01,000,000500,000
Panera Bread,290,5002,599,4321.15.97,500,0003,000,000
Pizza Hut,575906,9111.06.9700,000350,000
Dairy Queen Cream1,404,2201,143,1800.88.2750,000400,000
Jack in the Box,195,8001,755,5030.812.51,000,000250,000
Papa John’s,6951,101,1273.12.1750,000250,000
Five Guys,2251,203,3662.42.8500,000250,000
Carl’s Jr.,860,3351,419,5160.88.71,000,000500,000
Baskin-Robbins Cream465,100316,8150.79.8250,000125,000
Applebee’s American5,137,9662,356,9650.514.51,000,000500,000
Denny's American3,785,4591,639,5490.415.41,000,000500,000
Papa Murphy's,174580,4411.35.0275,000125,000
Auntie Anne's,692343,1351.55.6300,000100,000
Firehouse Subs,186888,3561.44.6350,000100,000
Tropical Smoothie Cafe,500961,9692.23.0350,000125,000
Marco’s Pizza,625895,5232.03.3400,000100,000
Cold Stone Creamery Cream310,956417,5881.35.0250,000100,000
Church’s Chicken,195,1471,395,0881.25.71,000,000300,000
Moe’s Southwest Grill,3701,013,3611.35.21,000,000100,000
Tim Hortons,242,7501,188,2401.07.0500,000100,000
Checkers & Rally's,8471,039,7731.25.4750,000250,000
Charleys Philly Steaks,806786,2331.54.3500,000100,000
Buffalo Wild Wings,546,9002,534,1480.79.31,500,000750,000
Rita's Ice Cream215,839248,3401.25.8300,000100,000
A&W Restaurants,750851,2121.16.2350,000150,000
Hungry Howie’s Pizza,682806,8991.93.5750,000200,000
McAlister’s Deli,424,9631,865,8611.35.11,000,000500,000
Round Table Pizza,2501,037,8161.35.0500,000200,000
Qdoba Mexican Eats,250972,9621.54.5
Taco John’s,119,0001,124,9801.06.61,000,000400,000
Scooter’s Coffee,143,250797,1010.79.6500,000200,000
Einstein Bros. Bagels,075885,0111.25.71,000,000536,500
Great American Cookies,275452,7711.25.7250,000100,000
Wienerschnitzel dogs873,300880,9801.06.6600,000250,000
Blaze Pizza,4501,096,4321.37.9500,000300,000
Wetzel's Pretzels,571748,8572.03.4300,00050,000
Pizza Ranch,268,3001,174,0880.418.61,000,000297,000
Del Taco,406,8501,345,3411.07.02,000,000500,000
Schlotzsky’s, Salads1,102,9331,053,3330.322.21,000,000300,000
Captain D’s,7781,067,8160.419.01,000,000350,000
Biggby Coffee,575648,3520.320.0300,000100,000
Which Wich,375281,8860.322.2500,000150,000
Marble Slab Creamery Cream407,360251,0520.416.7250,000100,000
Mountain Mike's Pizza,900865,7130.320.0300,000100,000
Huddle House,743712,4280.513.3600,000300,000
L&L Hawaiian Barbecue,350612,9210.333.3500,000150,000
Chicken Salad Chick, Salads651,0001,202,0200.320.0750,000250,000
Golden Chick,975917,6092.52.62,000,000425,000
Waba Grill,000466,5361.06.51,000,000250,000
Bruster’s Ice Cream Cream663,925466,6960.79.5375,000150,000