Popeyes is an American fast-food restaurant brand serving fried chicken dishes. Its current name, obtained in 2008, is Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc., the old ones are Popeyes Chicken & Biscuits and Popeyes Famous Fried Chicken & Biscuits. The chain was founded in 1972 in Arabi, a suburb of New Orleans, Louisiana, and is headquartered in Miami, Florida. It is currently owned by Toronto-based Restaurant Brands International, which has made it it’s subsidiary. The Popeyes system includes 3,102 establishments that operate in 30 countries worldwide and more than 40 states and districts of the United States. Of these, 30 restaurants are owned by the firm itself; the rest are franchise services.
Meaning and History
The idea to found a fast-food chain serving chicken dishes belongs to the American entrepreneur Alvin Copeland. He opened his first establishment in the summer of 1972 in the hope of competing with the popular Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC). The businessman named the restaurant Chicken on the Run, but it was unsuccessful and went bankrupt in just a few months. Four days later, he had another catering establishment – Popeyes Mighty Good Chicken.
In 1975, the company was named Popeyes Famous Fried Chicken, and a year later, the owner switched to franchising. He began in Louisiana, covering neighboring states and Canada, where he came in 1984. In 1985, the restaurateur opened his 500th fast food outlet. However, in 1990, there was a default, and the network had to pay off the debts that it took upon itself after buying Church’s. The result of the litigation was the emergence of AFC (America’s Favorite Chicken), which became Popeyes and Church’s parent company. In 2004, AFC sold Church’s to Arcapita, retaining Popeyes.
The brand name that makes up the emblem is partly related to the image of the cartoon character Popeye. In the early stages, the firm sponsored the children’s show Popeye & Pals, so the sailor was on some packages. However, Alvin C. Copeland himself said that he referred to detective Jimmy “Popeye” Doyle, the protagonist from the 1971 film The French Connection. But in any case, the name is written with the ending “s” without an apostrophe. The restaurant owner joked about this that he was too poor even to afford an apostrophe. According to English grammar, Alvin meant direct competitors to McDonald’s and Hardee’s, which have an apostrophe at the end of their words.
Later, the network nevertheless bought the rights to use the name of the brave sailor Popeye for marketing purposes. She used it for 35 years, then terminated her contract with King Features Syndicate. Therefore, the connection with the cartoon character is now really lacking. In 2020, an active revival of restaurants began with expansion around the world. At the same time, the designers changed the image of the institution and corrected the colors. There are four logos in Popeyes’ arsenal.
1972 – 2001
Despite the frequent name changes, the company remained faithful to its debut identity. She used it before the transition to the new millennium. It was a text mark made up of the name of the restaurant. Initially, the letters were depicted as “jumping,” located chaotically, not systematically. But despite this, the word “Popeyes” still read well. Some characters were slanted to the left (first P, Y, S), others to the right (O, P, both E). The top of the “P” had serif-shaped protrusions. The rest of the letters did not have them. An individual uppercase font was chosen for the inscription. The exception was “E,” which was lowercase. The word was colored crimson.
2001 – 2008
At the beginning of this period, a redesign took place, after which the text emblem acquired a new look. The designers made the letters a little larger and thinner, freeing up enough space for internal gaps, which added legibility to the lettering. The developers increased the first “P” in size, making it look bigger than the others – like a capital letter. In addition, they changed the tilt of the center “E” and “Y,” so the lettering seemed almost even. The authors also worked with color, replacing crimson with burgundy.
2008 – 2019
Starting in 2008, the characters in the word “Popeyes” began to “jump” differently. If earlier they seemed to swing left and right, then, in this case, they jumped up and down. Both “E” went beyond the lower border, “O,” “Y,” “S” went beyond the upper one. But the shape of the signs remained the same, although the designers placed all letters vertically in the restaurant chain’s name. Another important innovation of this period is the golden yellow color. It is typical for chicken dishes, so the developers chose it.
2019 – present
The current emblem features orange lettering in perfectly straight lettering as the company ditched the fun-loving style and focused on the down-to-earth approach. This is due to the revitalization of activities to expand the franchise around the world. For such a start, the brand needed a new logo that does not look like the old one, but at the same time, it is quite recognizable. The designers just changed the font.
Font and Colors of the Emblem
In the modern version, the corporate inscription is complemented by a round stamp, which depicts a golden rooster – an indication of a variety of dishes with chicken meat. To the right and left of it is the year the Popeyes fast-food restaurant was founded. It is divided into two parts: “19” and “72”. Above and below, the location of the head office is written, and the type of establishment is indicated: “Louisiana” and “Kitchen.” Together, they form the new name of the network, which appeared in the 2008th year.
The names of the restaurants are made in an individual “jumping” font, which has no analogs. The modern version is vaguely reminiscent of the Bold Regular typeface with short legs at “Ps” and an oblique cut at the “e” end. For the phrase “Louisiana Kitchen,” the designers chose an option close to the Belizio Black serif typeface.
The corporate palette has changed several times. The early versions of the logo were crimson and burgundy; in the later versions, it was yellow-gold and orange.