Layne’s Chicken Fingers Welcomes Chief Development Officer

by Katie Lee

Frisco, Texas — Layne’s Chicken Fingers, a growing chicken franchise with 13 restaurants open and another 113 sold, is welcoming part-owner Eric Reed as its new chief development officer to support the system’s ongoing growth.

“My ultimate, long term goal is to get Layne’s to the point that all we have to do is put an Astro Chicken on the sign in front of the restaurant and people know who we are,” says Reed. “If we can get to that level of brand awareness, we’ve made it. That’s all we need to reach all of our future goals.”

As a principal with Main & Main Capital Group, a development group that works closely with Layne’s, and a College Station, Texas, native, Reed knew and loved Layne’s long before he officially joined the leadership team. Stepping into the CDO role allowed him to be even more involved in an incredibly meaningful opportunity, working alongside his brother and CEO of Layne’s, Garrett Reed.

“Even though I’ve been a part of successful companies in my past roles and have a huge passion for development, this is just better,” Eric Reed says. “It’s not just development, it’s developing a brand that my brother and I have built together and are building a legacy for our own kids. It’s so compelling and exciting.”

Prior to joining Layne’s full-time, Eric Reed worked with Dutch Bros, Chili’s and Starbucks, driving development pushes through careful market analysis and real estate strategy.

“We’re seeing excitement among the franchisees, and with Eric on the team, our goal of 12 new restaurants opening next year is not far-fetched whatsoever,” says Samir Wattar, COO at Layne’s. “He brings more expertise to the real estate aspect of development than we’ve ever had by ourselves — there’s a science and expertise to it now.”

After a growth surge in 2023, Layne’s continues to work toward awarding restaurants in key markets, including Texas, Florida, Arizona, New Mexico and Oklahoma. Reed will provide valuable support for franchisees during this development process, working with the team to make Layne’s — and the Astro Chicken — well-known nationwide.

Founded in 1994 in College Station, Texas, the original location became a Texas A&M legend known for its small-town charm, friendly service, iconic chicken fingers and secret sauce. While opening corporate locations across the Dallas-Fort Worth area, the leadership team focused on fine tuning its operations and starting to franchise. For more information, visit

SOURCE: Layne’s Chicken Fingers

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