How to start a Dairy Queen Franchise in USA

Complete Guide To Start Dairy Queen Franchise in USA


Dairy Queen, now known as DQ, is one of America’s most recognizable quick-service restaurant brands. Dairy Queen founded its reputation on its iconic soft-serve ice cream, but it has long since grown to include burgers, chicken strips, sandwiches, and fries. Dairy Queen, with over 7,000 stores, is one of the most famous QSR businesses in the United States. There are also other international Dairy Queen stores worldwide.


Dairy Queen franchise is the most popular franchise option because it is a prominent brand with a lengthy history of success. The organization has a large consumer base and offers its franchisees extensive training and assistance. Dairy Queen franchises can be profitable but need considerable time and financial investment.


Since its start, Dairy Queen has been named to Entrepreneur’s Franchise 500 several times. This ranking is based on analyzing over 150 data factors, including charges, brand strength, size and growth, financial strength, franchisee support, and stability.


Opening a Dairy Queen franchise may provide a more predictable outcome than investing in a wholly new brand, which may need help to prosper in a crowded and competitive field.

To join the Dairy Queen team, you must be financially prepared to make an initial commitment consisting of a franchise fee and other beginning expenditures. Furthermore, you should budget for continuing expenditures such as advertising, royalties, and prospective renewal fees. Franchisees must also meet the company’s established net worth and liquid capital standards.


Dairy Queen Franchise: A brief Overview:


Year of Business 1940
Year of Franchise 1944
Headquarters Minneapolis, Minnisota 
Number of units 7,190
Initial franchise InvestmentUSD 45,000


Types of Dairy Queen Franchise in the USA:


Training Overview: Currently, three components are necessary for the first training:


1.SERVSAFE certification is based on the Management Training Readiness Assessment or MTRA.


2.The training regimen for ADQ (three phases): Product and Equipment Phase 1


3.Phase 2: Management, Service and Financial Fundamentals People, PRIDE, and Profit Training; Phase 3


The appointed manager of the franchise and two assistant managers are expected to attend to all three components. The needed attendees must pass the MTRA before attending the franchisor’s training session, which is conducted at a venue selected by the franchisor. The MTRA assesses leadership, customer service, decision-making, prioritization, and business maths, and it is subject to change at any time by the franchisor. 


The attendees should have a current SERVSAFE certificate, which the franchisor will only recognize if obtained via a course that is part of or equal to the National Restaurant Association’s SERVSAFE program. The ADQ training program takes place at an officially certified DQ establishment, the franchisor’s classroom in Minneapolis or any other location designated by the franchisor.


Territory Guaranteed: When franchisees sign a Franchise Agreement, they are given the right to run a single restaurant at any authorized or given location agreed to in writing by the franchisor. There is no minimum area or territory assigned to franchisees. According to the terms of a Franchise Agreement, the franchisor does not award any exclusive franchise areas.


Restrictions and obligations: Franchisees must actively and continuously supervise their Dairy Queen C & G location. If the franchisee is referred to as a business entity, the franchisee must have one owner who oversees the general management of the location’s day-to-day activities. The franchisor needs franchisees to offer and sell only those items and services approved by the franchisor. Furthermore, franchisees are only permitted to provide and sell these approved items and services from their restaurant. Franchisees must carry the menu items specified by the franchisor for their location.


Agreement terms and renewal: The initial franchise tenure is 20 years long. The lease will be renewed for ten years or the remaining agreement length if all requirements are completed.


Financial Assistance: Though they might have done so in previous years, the franchisor and its affiliates normally do not offer franchisees loans or other such support. The franchisor regularly works with third-party financial companies or banks to make financing packages available to franchisees. These deals typically involve little more than putting franchisees in touch with available sources of financing. There is no guarantee that finance will be available in any individual case.


Dairy Queen Franchise Cost:


A Dairy Queen franchise costs between $25,000 and $35,000. The total anticipated investment ranges from $382,000 to $1.8 million, with $400,000 in liquid cash available. In addition, the corporation receives a 4-5% royalty charge on gross monthly receipts. Dairy Queen’s revenue has surpassed $2.5 billion.


Initial Franchise Investment fee: $45,000


Initial Investment: $1,461,200 to $2,426,990


Net Worth: $7,50,000


Name of the feeLowHigh
Initial Franchise Investment fee$45,000$45,000
SIR or Site investigation report $0$5,000
Initial cost and fees of training$1200$11,990
Construction consultation cost $0$7,500
Travel and living costs$23,000$38,500
Training inventory cost $6,000$16,000
Opening inventory cost$15,000$35,000
Attorney’s fees$1,000$8,000


Dairy Queen Franchise requirements:


The company has not yet disclosed the franchise requirements for Dairy Queen. One can only get access to the requirements after they apply for the franchise. The information will be shared with only those who meet the basic criterion. 


Dairy Queen Franchise application process:

Before taking any financial decision or prior to signing an agreement, you must conduct due diligence to determine whether this is the correct opportunity for you. According to the due diligence, you may want to speak with current franchisees and ask questions of the Dairy Queen franchising staff.


Franchisees interested in creating their own Dairy Queen franchise should inquire about a franchise opportunity before researching the company’s franchise structure. Franchisees will begin training with Dairy Queen’s franchise support team after submitting an application and being approved, who will assist you with the design, building, and staffing of your Dairy Queen location.


A typical franchise deal is for a period of 20 years. Franchisees who meet the Dairy Queen requirements may be able to renew their agreement. Once your establishment is built, manned, and open for business, you’ll be ready to meet your community’s needs by Dairy Queen menu, including Dairy Queen cakes, Dairy Queen milkshakes, sweets, burgers, fries, and chicken.


Moreover, you can apply for the Dairy Queen franchise on their official website. After you are done filling out the Dairy Queen application form, the company will contact you for further information. To fill out the application form, click here. 


Dairy Queen Franchise Profit Margin:


The money or revenue the franchise owner can generate from a Dairy Queen franchise depends on several factors, including the location of the franchise, cost of workers, commercial rates, and a few other factors. 


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Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ's)

There are approximately 7,000 stores in the United States, Canada, and twenty other countries across the globe.

Dairy Queen is one of the fastest growing Quick Service Restaurants or QSRs because of its franchise model.

Dairy Queen is owned by Berkshire Hathaway and International Dairy Queen Inc.

The annual salary of Dairy Queen Franchise owners is USD 70,000. 

According to Franchise Business Review, the average yearly pre-tax earning of franchise owners in the United States is USD 80,000. Only 7 percent of franchise owners earn more than $250,000 per year, while 51% make less than $50,000.

Dairy Queen closes around 10 PM to 11 PM.  

Yes, Dairy Queen has been ranked in Entrepreneur’s Franchise 500 numerous times since its founding, owing to its exceptional customer reputation.