eggs up grill

Wendy's 20-Unit Franchisee & Henry's Smokehouse Owner Sign Multi-Restaurant Deal with Eggs Up Grill

July 14, 2020
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The brand’s newest franchisees, Jackson Turner and Darby Smith, have signed a 5-location agreement to grow the brand in the upstate of South Carolina.   

Jackson Turner and Darby Smith go back—way back. The lifelong friends’ parents met in college at Clemson University, and in Turner’s words, they’re “like brothers from different mothers.” They grew up helping in the Turner family’s 20-unit Wendy’s franchise business.  When the opportunity came along to go in business together as franchisees with Eggs Up Grill, they jumped at the chance to bring the breakfast, brunch and lunch concept to more neighborhoods in their native Upstate South Carolina.

Jackson Turner and Darby Smith spread smiles across the upstate with Eggs Up Grill Franchises

“We both really enjoyed going to Eggs Up Grill, and always thought the food, service and atmosphere were excellent. We discovered they were entering a huge phase of growth and we’re looking forward to both adding to our own experience and growing this franchise,” said Turner.

Growth is something that these two understand.  Turner and Smith both have an impressive professional experience in restaurants and franchising.

“My father has been a Wendy’s franchisee for about 35 years. In 1985, my dad grew to 56 locations all across the Southeast,” said Turner. “In 2014, we bought out some of the equity there, and my dad and I own 50% of the franchise that expands from north Atlanta to Spartanburg, South Carolina. I’ve been a franchisee all my life. It’s what I’ve done for the past 23 years.” 

Smith brings over 12-years of experience in restaurant ownership and is a partner with three locations and one food truck of barbecue restaurant Henry’s Smokehouse, a restaurant he started with as a teenager. “I told a friend that I was wanting to get out of the barbecue business, and he sent me an email with a link to a short video about Eggs Up Grill,” said Smith. “I knew they were growing, but I didn’t realize they were wanting to grow as much as they are.

Smith went on to say that from a value standpoint, Eggs Up Grill would be an essential addition to the Clemson and Easley, South Carolina market. “We want to be the best and most economical place to get a good, convenient breakfast,” said Smith. “Our guest service is great. Our food is great. The rest will take care of itself.” Smith also has experience in catering, something the team hopes to leverage with Eggs Up Grill.

As lifelong local residents, Smith and Turner have the community in mind when it comes to franchising with Eggs Up Grill. “When you give back to charity, it pays off,” said Smith. “At Henry’s Smokehouse we did lots of special events to raise money for various charities, and I think it gets the name out and provides us with a nice connection with the local community. We hope to continue that with Eggs Up Grill.”

The business partners are still in the process of negotiating real estate for their first location and are looking to open five locations within 8-12 months of each other. Once those five locations are open in South Carolina, the business partners have plans to expand into Northeast Georgia as well.

About Eggs Up Grill:

Eggs Up Grill is home to the whole neighborhood, serving smiles from sunup through lunch. The aromas of freshly brewed coffee, savory bacon and hand-cracked, farm-fresh eggs on the griddle, and warm, attentive team members will make you feel right at home. We are “neighbors serving neighbors” daily from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Recently ranked as the no. 1 breakfast franchise by Entrepreneur magazine’s Franchise 500® for its outstanding performance in areas including unit growth, financial strength and stability, and brand power, Eggs Up Grill is experiencing record growth across the Southeast. Originally founded in Pawleys Island, S.C., by restaurateur Chris Skodras, Eggs Up Grill now has 47 locations and is headquartered in Spartanburg, S.C.  In 2018, private equity firm WJ Partners acquired Eggs Up Grill, building the team and priming the brand to rapidly grow in more communities across the U.S. with plans underway to reach the 100 restaurant mark by 2023. For more information, visit To learn more about franchising with Eggs Up Grill, visit