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20 Years at SONIC: From Chris McMillan’s First Job to Owning his First Drive-In

Like many American teenagers, Chris McMillan’s first job was with SONIC Drive-In at the age of 14. Twenty-two years later, he now owns four drive-ins in Slidell, Louisiana, with his wife Amy — and the husband-and-wife duo isn’t stopping there. The McMillan’s are already looking to expand by acquiring two more locations and building five more within the next three years.

“For me, I love SONIC,” McMillan said. “It’s been a part of my life for a long time and it’s become a brand that I strongly believe in and trust. Having grown up with SONIC, being a part of it now as a franchise owner is even sweeter. We’re very happy to be able to serve our community and SONIC is really a popular hang-out location in Slidell.”

As a member of the SONIC family for more than two decades, McMillan has witnessed first-hand the menu diversification available at drive-ins around the country. It’s that variety offered through multiple dayparts that he believes sets the brand apart.

“SONIC’s menu keeps guests coming back all day long. We offer an endless ability for our guests to customize their orders and our mobile order-ahead app takes customization to another level,” McMillan said. “Additionally, customer service is No. 1 here. At SONIC, we believe in giving customers what they want, how they want it. So when you have a brand with great products, exceptional customer service and the convenience of not having to get out of your car, nothing else on the planet compares.”

As McMillan looks towards his future success, his ambitious plans to continue growing are rooted in his belief that the future of SONIC is brighter than ever.

“The best thing about franchising with SONIC is that its business model is not only simple to understand, but also highly scalable. SONIC provides industry-leading support with a personal touch. It never ceases to amaze me that for the brand to be as big as it is, as a franchisee, you are literally one phone call away from conversing with anyone on our corporate team, including Chief Marketing Officer, Lori Abou Habib,” McMillan said.

“It’s been simply wonderful to finally own the brand that I love. It’s something I’ve worked my whole life for and now that I have it, I want to grow and expand as much as I possibly can. My wife and I don’t ever plan on leaving SONIC, this is our career for the rest of our lives.”

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