Subway is one of the most well-known, popular, and successful fast-food franchises in the world and has over 41,000 stores all over the world.
Given this company’s success, you may be wondering whether Subway currently trades on the stock market and, if not, whether they have future plans to go public. I’ve done some research, and here is everything I’ve found!
Is Subway On the Stock Market?
Subway is a privately held company, and the company is not currently traded on any stock exchange. Subway is instead owned by Doctor’s Associates Inc., a private company that was founded by Subway founders Fred DeLuca and Peter Buck. As of now, Subway has no plans of going public or offering an IPO anytime in the future.
If you want to find out about Subway’s position in the stock market, whether you can buy Subway stock, and more, then continue reading for more useful information!
Has Subway Ever Been On the Stock Market Before?
Subway has never been traded publicly on the stock market since its inception in 1965 due to Doctor’s Associates Inc. holding all stocks in the company and has done so since it was founded by Fred DeLuca and Peter Buck (the owners of Subway).
Subway and Doctor’s Associates Inc. are currently owned and held by the DeLuca family after Fred DeLuca’s passing in 2015.
This means that the business was handed down to the next generation, and in all likelihood, it will be for many years to come. Therefore, it’s unlikely that Subway will ever enter the stock market.
What Is Doctor’s Associates Inc., and How Is Its Corporate Structure Made Up?
In 1966 (the year after the first Subway location was opened), Fred DeLuca and Dr. Peter Buck formed Doctor’s Associates Inc. to oversee the operations of the restaurants as the franchise expanded.
Today, Doctor’s Associates Inc. largely exists to keep the Subway company held tightly within the hands of the company and is the company that mainly manages Subway’s franchises.
As well as Doctor’s Associates Inc., Subway’s Corporate structure is also made up of the following:
- Franchise World Headquarters, LLC leads franchising operations. FWH Technologies, LLC owns and licenses Subway’s point-of-sale software
- Other franchisors include Subway International B.V. and Subway Franchise Systems of Canada, Ltd.
- Advertising affiliates include Subway Franchisee Advertising Fund Trust, Ltd., Subway Franchisee Advertising Fund Trust, B.V., and the Subway Franchisee Canadian Advertising Trust
- IPC Europe (Independent Purchasing Company Europe Limited), manager of the Subway franchisees and the Subcard loyalty scheme in European countries
Will Subway Ever Go Public?
At this point in time, it’s unlikely (though not impossible) that Subway will enter the public stock market.
Subway is currently an entirely private company, with all shares and stocks held by Doctor’s Associate’s Inc., which is made up of family and other representatives of the foundation.
However, it’s not impossible to see Subway going public in the future. Subway has recently struggled financially, as 2020 proved to be a less profitable year.
As well, there was a rumor in April 2021 that Subway would be sold and made public, though this was denied and shut down by Elisabeth DeLuca (the widow of the co-founder, Fred DeLuca).
Despite these recent events, Subway has always been unwilling to have the company taken over by larger corporations or other larger overseers.
In fact, Subway implemented an anti-takeover protection scheme to prevent a takeover from happening.
Can You Buy Shares in Subway?
It’s easier than ever to get involved with the stock market and purchase shares in companies through apps such as eToro, Robinhood, and Acorns, which allow anybody to enter the market and buy stocks and shares.
However, due to Subway being a privately owned company, it is currently impossible to buy any number of shares in the Subway company.
Subway stock is currently privately owned and held exclusively by Doctor’s Associates Inc., which prevents the company from being sold or shares being put out to market.
Are There Any Competitors To Subway That Are On the Stock Market?
Due to Subway being privately owned and not publicly trading on the stock market, many stock market investors look to their competitors to find worthwhile investments.
A few of Subway’s closest competitors in the fast-food industry that do trade on the stock market include:
McDonald’s is one of the largest and most successful fast-food companies in the world, operating in more than 120 countries and territories with over 38,000 restaurants.
McDonald’s has a successful and proven business model and has proven that it can adapt to change by constantly adapting to changing markets and trends, allowing McDonald’s to achieve more sales and reward shareholders with higher dividends.
Dominos has gained a huge space in the pizza delivery market share, with some estimates putting the company close to 50% of the market.
Dominos also heavily benefitted during 2020-2021, with the need for pizza delivery being higher than ever. They also practice fortressing, which means adding more stores in established markets, making Dominos highly investable.
While Shake Shack is a much smaller brand, they are a popular chain and have a lot of potential to grow.
The company saw huge growth in online sales over the last year, as its online channels have brought in around 2.4 million new customers during 2020-2021. Overall, this recent growth makes Shake Shack an exciting investment.
Chipotle has recently overcome a huge drop in its customer base and is now thriving, and expanding, looking to fill 20,000 jobs and raise the minimum wage. With Chipotle’s expansion will come growth, which makes this company an investment to consider.
Restaurant Brand International:
Restaurant Brand International is a stock that covers Burger King, Popeyes, and Tim Hortons, which total around 25,000 locations.
With 3 major brands, the company can experiment and test new ideas in new markets, making the company an easy one to consider investing in, as all 3 brands are currently seeing success.