Johnny Rockets

Johnny Rockets
Industry Burger Restaurant
Founded June 6, 1986 (1986-06-06)
Los Angeles, California, United States
Founder Ronn Teitelbaum
Headquarters Lake Forest, California, U.S.
Number of locations
320 (2010)[1]
Area served
Key people
Chales Bruce, CEO
Products American Food Choices
Revenue $69 million (2010)[2]
Owner Sun Capital Partners

Johnny Rockets is an American restaurant franchise whose themed decor is based upon 1950s diner-style restaurants. Decor includes Coca-Cola advertising, featuring nearly life-size cardboard illustrations of women in World War II armed services uniforms, individual jukebox stations, chrome accents and red vinyl seats. The staff at some locations are known to sing and dance every half-hour. Making a smiley face with ketchup on the paper plate when serving French fries is a Johnny Rockets trademark.

The menu, presentation, counter seating and grilling area are based on an original restaurant from 1947 (still operating today), The Apple Pan in West Los Angeles. Hamburgers are grilled-to-order in full view of the customers and are served wrapped in paper on paper plates.[3][4][5]


Johnny Rockets was founded on June 6, 1986, by Ronn Teitelbaum of Los Angeles, California, and "crafted as a 'nongimmicky' recreation of the 1940s-vintage malt shops of his childhood." The first restaurant was established as a 20-stool counter operation on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles.[4] This location permanently closed on October 26, 2015.[6]

Johnny Rockets in Denver (defunct, now a 7-Eleven)
Johnny Rockets at Six Flags Over Texas.

In February 2007, it was announced[7] that RedZone Capital, the private equity firm of Daniel Snyder, was set to acquire the chain. Snyder announced plans to expand the chain both within the United States and worldwide, including the launch of smaller outlets known as Johnny Rockets Express.

A sit-down restaurant owned by Six Flags (Red Zone is the largest shareholder), Trappers Adirondack Grill, was converted to a Johnny Rockets in June 2008.[8]

In April 2009, the new Yankee Stadium opened with Johnny Rockets stands throughout the site. These stands serve traditional Johnny Rockets hamburgers, french fries, shakes, and malts, among other menu items. FedEx Field, home of Washington Redskins (the stadium and team are both owned by Snyder, whose company owned Johnny Rockets at the time), features Johnny Rockets concession areas.[9]

The world's largest Johnny Rockets franchise opened on June 6, 2012, at the corner of Abraham Lincoln Avenue and Bolivar Avenue in Santo Domingo, the capital city of the Dominican Republic. The restaurant has more than 6,000 square feet (560 m2) and seating for more than 200 guests.[10]

RedZone Capital Management sold the company to Sun Capital Partners in 2013.[11]

Johnny Rockets opened its first branch in Pakistan on December 5, 2013, in Dolmen City Mall, Karachi. Plans to open up in Pakistan were announced June 2013.[12] This is not only the first branch of Johnny Rockets in Pakistan but also its first branch in South Asia.[13] Johnny Rockets followed it up with the opening of its next branch in Lahore. This branch made its official opening on January 17, 2014, and then further extended with the opening of their third branch in Pakistan in the capital Islamabad at The Centaurus Mega Mall.[14]

In the media

In 2009, the company and CEO John Fuller were featured in the hit TV show Undercover Boss on CBS in the USA and on Channel 4 in the United Kingdom.

The sixth episode of the anime series Blood Blockade Battlefront features a parody of the restaurant called Jack Rockets which the characters Leonardo Watch and Nej order from a lot.

See also


  1. Volpe, Michael (July 19, 2010). "Johnny Rockets Offers Loans to Credit-Strapped Franchisees". Orange County Business Journal. 33 (29): 4.
  2. Hamanaka, Kari (May 9, 2011). "Johnny Rockets: Americana Abroad Driving Growth". Orange County Business Journal. 34 (19): 4.
  3. "".
  4. 1 2 Spector, Amy; Martin, Richard (September 25, 2000). "Ronn Teitelbaum, Johnny Rockets founder, dies at 61". Nation's Restaurant News.
  5. "The Apple Pan hickory burger revisited (with clear eyes)". February 18, 2007.
  6. "World Famous Melrose Avenue Landmark Closes It's Doors". Melrose Action.
  7. Ross, Andrew (2007-02-09). "Footballs, Funhouses and Fries - New York Times". Retrieved 2011-11-25.
  8. "Trapper's Adirondack Grille to be converted to new Johnny Rockets restaurant". Adirondack Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved June 17, 2012.
  9. "RedZone Capital to Acquire Johnny Rockets". Display and Design Ideas. February 13, 2007.
  10. "World's Largest Johnny Rockets Restaurant Opens".
  11. Luna, Nancy (June 18, 2013). "O.C.-based burger chain Johnny Rockets sold". The Orange County Register. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
  12. "Johnny Rockets set to rock the coast of Karachi - The Express Tribune". 12 June 2013.
  13. " Is For Sale".
  14. "Johnny Rockets reaches Pakistan".
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