Chick-fil-A is the left's most-hated fast-food chain. Progressives routinely boycott the chain for being "anti-gay" despite never turning away LGBT customers. New data reveals the LGBT boycotts have actually been ineffective – in fact, the chain's sales have more than doubled in the wake of the protests.
The boycotts began in 2012 after a pro-LGBT blog accused Chick-fil-A customers of "eating anti-gay." In response, Dan Cathy, son of then-CEO S. Truett Cathy, affirmed the biblical vision for marriage and established the Chick-fil-A Foundation, a charitable organization that critics claim donates to groups that oppose same-sex marriage.
In just 7 years since controversy began, Chick-fil-A's sales have more than doubled, a stunning accomplishment for any business, but even more significant considering the short timeframe and saturation of the restaurant market.
In 2012, Chick-fil-A sales totaled $4.6 billion. By 2018, total restaurant revenue eclipsed $10.4 billion. Beginning in 2014, revenue has increased by more than $1 billion each year, a trend that does not appear to be slowing down anytime soon.
Not only has revenue exploded, but Chick-fil-A has also opened nearly 700 new locations since the boycotts began. The combination of food quality and customer service also propelled Chick-fil-A to be the nation's favorite restaurant chain.
Chick-fil-A is now the nation's third-largest fast-food chain in terms of revenue, trailing behind Starbucks and McDonalds. However, Chick-fil-A has significantly fewer locations than either restaurant — just 2,400 — meaning they rake in significantly more revenue per location.
In fact, each Chick-fil-A generates an average of $4.6 million in revenue per year, more than double that of McDonalds, despite being closed on Sundays.
Fortunately for Chick-fil-A, the future looks even better as experts believe the restaurant's exponential growth will continue.
"I would be surprised if they didn't double that in the not-too-distant future," Kalinowski Equity Research founder Mark Kalinowski told Business Insider. "Can they reach $30 billion? I think that's also a realistic goal if you give them enough time. And that should put them ahead of Starbucks."