Number of locations
Terrance M. Marks (2011–)
Burgers, Chicken Wings, Seafood, Full bar
Atlanta, Georgia, United States
1 April 1983, Clearwater, Florida, United States
Lynn D. Stewart, Gil DiGiannantonio, Billy Ranieri, Ken Wimmer, Ed Droste, Dennis Johnson, Edward C. Droste
Hooters comedy special
Hooters, Inc. is the trade name of two privately held American restaurant chains: Hooters of America, Incorporated, based in Atlanta, Georgia, and Hooters, Incorporated, based in Clearwater, Florida. The Hooters name is a double entendre referring to both its owl logo, a bird known for its "hooting" calls, and an American slang term for human breasts popularized by comedian Steve Martin on the hit comedy series Saturday Night Live.
- Hooters comedy special
- Funny hooters prank tom mabe
- Restaurant remodel
- Hooters Girls
- Legal history
- Legal status
- Employee handbook requirements
- Charitable activities
- Reality television
- Athletics and promotions
The waiting staff at Hooters restaurants are primarily attractive young women, usually referred to simply as "Hooter Girls", whose revealing outfits and sex appeal are played up and are a primary component of the company's image. The company employs other men and women as cooks, hosts (at some franchises), busboys, and managers. The menu includes hamburgers and other sandwiches, steaks, seafood entrees, appetizers, and the restaurant's specialty, chicken wings. Almost all Hooters restaurants hold alcoholic beverage licenses to sell beer and wine, and where local permits allow, a full liquor bar. Hooters T-shirts, sweatshirts, and various souvenirs and curios are also sold.
As of 2016 there were more than 430 Hooters locations and franchises around the world and Hooters of America LLC. owns 160 units. There are Hooters locations in 44 U.S. states, the US Virgin Islands, Guam, and in 28 other countries. The company's first overseas location was in Singapore, and there are Hooters restaurants in Aruba, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Bolivia, Canada, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Germany, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Hungary, Japan, Mexico, Panama, Philippines, South Africa, South Korea, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Russia, and one in the United Kingdom, following the closure of the remaining UK franchises. The three largest Hooters restaurants are in Singapore, Tokyo, and São Paulo. In 2015 Hooters announced that it is planning to open more than 30 restaurants in Southeast Asia over the next six years.
In January 2011 Chanticleer Holdings LLC of Charlotte, North Carolina and others completed the purchase of Hooters of America Inc. from the Brooks family.
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Hooters, Inc. was incorporated in Clearwater, Florida, on April 1, 1983, by six Clearwater businessmen: Lynn D. Stewart, Gil DiGiannantonio, Ed Droste, Billy Ranieri, Ken Wimmer and Dennis Johnson. The date was an April Fools' Day joke because the original six owners believed that their prospect was going to fail. Their first Hooters restaurant was built on the site of a former rundown nightclub that had been purchased at a low price. So many businesses had folded in that particular location that the Hooters founders built a small "graveyard" at the front door for each that had come and gone before them. The first restaurant opened its doors on October 4, 1983, in Clearwater. This original location was decorated with memorabilia from Waverly, Iowa, hometown to some of the original Hooters 6.
In 1984 Hugh Connerty bought the rights to Hooters from the Original Hooters 6. Robert H. Brooks and a group of Atlantan investors (operators of Hooters of America, Inc.) bought out Hugh Connerty. In 2002, Brooks bought majority control and became chairman. The Clearwater-based company retained control over restaurants in the Tampa Bay Area, Chicago metropolitan area, and one in Manhattan, New York, while all other locations were under the aegis of Hooters of America, which sold franchising rights to the rest of the United States and international locations. Under Brooks's leadership, the collective Hooters brand expanded to more than 425 stores worldwide. Brooks died on July 15, 2006, in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, of a heart attack. Brooks's will gave most of Hooters of America Inc. to his son Coby Brooks and daughter Boni Belle Brooks.
The Hooters Casino Hotel was opened February 2, 2006, off the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, Nevada. This hotel has 696 rooms with a 35,000-square-foot (3,300 m2) casino. The hotel is owned and operated by 155 East Tropicana, LLC. It is adjacent to the Tropicana, across the street from the MGM Grand Las Vegas. As of 2014, it is the only Hooters facility offering lodging since a Hooters Inn motel located along Interstate 4 in Lakeland, Florida was demolished in 2007.
As part of their 25th anniversary, Hooters Magazine released its list of top Hooters Girls of all time. Among the best-known were Lynne Austin (the original Hooters Girl), the late Kelly Jo Dowd (the mother of the golfer Dakoda Dowd), Bonnie-Jill Laflin, Leeann Tweeden, and Holly Madison.
After Brooks' death, 240 buyers showed interest in Hooters of America Inc., and 17 submitted bids, with that number being reduced to eight, and then three, before the selection of Wellspring Capital Management. Chanticleer Holdings LLC, which had the right to block the sale after a $5 million loan made in 2006, did so in a December 1, 2010, letter to the court. As a result, Chanticleer and other investors bought the company.
As of July 2013 Hooters of America owns 160 restaurants and operates or franchises over 430.
In 2013, the company announced a plan to remodel every restaurant in the chain. The prototype restaurant first remodeled was the location in Houston, Texas located off the Southwest Freeway at Kirby Drive near Downtown Houston. The new design (done by ASD|skydesign) will feature more windows and outdoor dining and upgraded audio-visual systems to better appeal to sports enthusiasts. The first completely redesigned Hooters is scheduled to open in New Orleans in July 2013.
The company also announced changes to its menu, such as the addition of entrée salads.
The appearance of the waitresses is a main selling feature of the restaurant. A Hooters Girl is a waitress employed by the Hooters restaurant chain. The girls are recognizable by their uniform of a white tank top with the "Hootie the Owl" logo and the location name on the front paired with short nylon orange runner's shorts. The remainder of the Hooters Girls uniform consists of the restaurant's brown ticket pouch (or a black one with the black uniform), tan pantyhose, white loose socks, and clean white shoes. Men who work at Hooters wear Hooters hats, T-shirts with long pants, Bermuda shorts, or attire more suitable for kitchen use.
In employment discrimination law in the United States, employers are generally allowed to consider characteristics that would otherwise be discriminatory if they are bona fide occupational qualifications (BFOQ). For example, a manufacturer of men's clothing may lawfully advertise for male models. Hooters has argued a BFOQ defense, which applies when the "essence of the business operation would be undermined if the business eliminated its discriminatory policy".
Employee handbook requirements
An older version of the Hooters Employee Handbook (prior to October 2006), published in The Smoking Gun reads:
Customers can go to many places for wings and beer, but it is our Hooters Girls who make our concept unique. Hooters offers its customers the look of the "All American Cheerleader, Surfer, Girl Next Door."
Female employees are required to sign that they "acknowledge and affirm" the following:
- My job duties require I wear the designated Hooters Girl uniform.
- My job duties require that I interact with and entertain the customers.
- The Hooters concept is based on female sex appeal and the work environment is one in which joking and entertaining conversations are commonplace.
Hooters has actively supported charities through its Hooters Community Endowment Fund, also known as HOO.C.E.F., a play on UNICEF. It has provided money and/or volunteers to charities such as Habitat for Humanity, The V Foundation for Cancer Research, Operation Homefront, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Special Olympics, Muscular Dystrophy Association and Stop Hunger Now. In addition, after the 2007 death of Kelly Jo Dowd, a former Hooters Girl, Hooters calendar cover girl and later restaurant general manager, Hooters began a campaign in support of breast cancer research, with awareness of the issue being spread through the Kelly Jo Dowd Fund. By 2010 the chain raised over $2 million for the cause.
In 2009, Hooters partnered with Operation Homefront to establish The Valentine Fund in honor of fallen soldier SOCS Thomas J. Valentine. The fund supports the families of US Special Forces service members and other military families. Thomas J. Valentine, a Navy SEAL troop chief, was killed during a training exercise February 13, 2008. He left behind his wife, Christina, and two young children. Hooters established a fund in Valentine’s name through Operation Homefront.
On February 14, 2010, then Hooters President and CEO Coby G. Brooks appeared in an episode of the CBS reality TV show Undercover Boss.
Athletics and promotions
Hooters is involved in the sports world. Previous sponsorships include the Miami Hooters, a now defunct Arena Football League team. Hooters formerly sponsored the USAR Hooters Pro Cup, an automobile racing series, and the NGA Pro Golf Tour, a minor league golf tour.
In 1992, Hooters sponsored NASCAR driver Alan Kulwicki as he won the Winston Cup Championship, beating Bill Elliott by ten points, the closest margin in NASCAR prior to The Chase era. On April 1, 1993 Kulwicki, along with several others including Hooters Chairman Bob Brooks' son Mark were killed in a plane crash near Bristol, Tennessee. They were flying back to the track for Sunday's race after making a sponsor appearance at a Hooters in Knoxville, Tennessee. Hooters remained in the sport, sponsoring drivers like Loy Allen Jr., Rick Mast and Brett Bodine before ending their involvement in 2003. The restaurant returned to NASCAR in 2007 to sponsor a Craftsman Truck Series team led by Jason White, Derrike Cope and Brad Keselowski. Six years later, Hooters sponsored Nationwide Series driver Nelson Piquet Jr.'s car. For the 2016 Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, Hooters made a comeback in the Cup Series with a one-off paint scheme for Greg Biffle. Hooters currently sponsors the No. 24 of Chase Elliott.
Hooters has sponsored the Major League Eating-sanctioned "Hooters Worldwide Wing Eating Championship" since 2012.
Hooters has also licensed its name for the Hooters Road Trip PlayStation racing game as well as a Hooters Calendar mobile wallpaper application. Oasys Mobile will also be putting out several other games for mobile consumption based on the Hooters Calendar license in 2008. It was also one of several real world brands that appeared in the 2011 video game Homefront.
Professional golfer John Daly was sponsored by Hooters when he was on the PGA Tour, a deal potentially in jeopardy given his recent issues with alcohol. He also serves as a corporate spokesman. Dick Vitale, a college basketball analyst, is also a spokesman for Hooters.
Since 1986, the restaurant has issued a calendar of their girls, with signings taking place in some of their restaurants. Since 1996, Hooters has held Miss Hooters International Swimsuit Pageant, a competition of Hooters Girls from around the world; in 2010, this event took place in Hollywood, Florida. An African-American woman won the Miss Hooters pageant for the first time in 2010: LeAngela Davis of Columbus, Ohio. Since the 2013 pageant season, the International Finals have been held in Las Vegas. The pageant, prior to the 2015 season, usually would be hosted at a Hooters location (known as the in-store pageant) where the winner advances to the citywide and state finals (in a metropolitan area where Hooter has a presence). Commencing with the 2016 season, the in-store pageant has been phased out leaving the citywide and state finals - although the individual Hooters locations does not hire a photo or video crew, the photo and video crew (including the master of ceremonies) are usually the equivalent of independent contractors who are usually acquainted with Hooters management. Since 2014, the director of the Hooters International Swimsuit Pageant has imposed stricter guidelines for those covering the pageant - one Houston, TX photographer subsequently resigned their commission because of the rule change.