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How did a craving for fresh oysters turn into a seafood franchise empire?

Hear our story.

How did a craving for fresh oysters turn into a seafood franchise empire?

Hear our story.

THE SHUCKIN’ SHACK STORY

Once upon a time, way back in 2007, Shuckin’ Shack co-Founders Matt Piccinin and Sean Cook had a craving for fresh oysters. Living in the sleepy coastal town of Carolina Beach, North Carolina, they figured it shouldn’t be too hard to find an oyster bar, right? WRONG.
Realizing they’d stumbled onto an unmet need in their local restaurant scene, Matt and Sean hatched a plan to open their own fresh oyster bar and seafood restaurant. Through cases of beer and plans scrawled on napkins, the pair’s dream materialized as a 900-square-foot monument to domestic seafood, cold beer, and laid-back fun for the locals who would flock to it upon opening.

Shuckin’ Shack was an instant hit with the locals, but things didn’t really get cooking until Jonathan Weathington joined the crew in 2014, quickly becoming the CEO and getting Shuckin’ Shack off the ground as a franchise.

Our first franchise location opened in Summerville, SC in 2015, and we haven’t looked back since! We’re now extending seafood restaurant franchise opportunities to damn cool people who want to help us take this thing across the country.

THE SHUCKIN’ SHACK STORY

Once upon a time, way back in 2007, Shuckin’ Shack co-Founders Matt Piccinin and Sean Cook had a craving for fresh oysters. Living in the sleepy coastal town of Carolina Beach, North Carolina, they figured it shouldn’t be too hard to find an oyster bar, right? WRONG.
Realizing they’d stumbled onto an unmet need in their local restaurant scene, Matt and Sean hatched a plan to open their own fresh oyster bar and seafood restaurant. Through cases of beer and plans scrawled on napkins, the pair’s dream materialized as a 900-square-foot monument to domestic seafood, cold beer, and laid-back fun for the locals who would flock to it upon opening.

Shuckin’ Shack was an instant hit with the locals, but things didn’t really get cooking until Jonathan Weathington joined the crew in 2014, quickly becoming the CEO and getting Shuckin’ Shack off the ground as a franchise.

Our first franchise location opened in Summerville, SC in 2015, and we haven’t looked back since! We’re now extending seafood restaurant franchise opportunities to damn cool people who want to help us take this thing across the country.

WHAT WE DO

When it comes to seafood restaurants, you may think only two types exist: snooty, white-tablecloth, jacket-and-tie establishments that cost an entire paycheck, and greasy fast-food joints that serve deep-fried mystery fish. That’s where Shuckin’ Shack comes in. We’re more flip-flops than cufflinks, but you can bet the quality of our sustainably-sourced domestic seafood beats even the most fancy-pants place in town…and we’re a hell of a lot more fun!

OYSTERS

They don’t call us the Shuckin’ Shack for nothing. Oyster fans, welcome home!

FAMILY-STYLE MEALS

Visiting a Shuckin’ Shack is like coming home to the East Coast for a family seafood feast.

MOUTH-WATERING WINGS

Not a seafood fan? Not a problem. Our wings are perfect for watching the big game or just sharing with the folks you love most.

FRESH SIGNATURE COCKTAILS

If Shuckin’ Shack is a boat, then the bar is the captain! Our mixed drinks bring the party right to your table.

“I love seafood! I have tried it worldwide from both coasts here in America, to Japan, Belgium etc.. This tiny shack served up tasty and fresh oysters, shrimp, and lobster that totally satisfied what My Partner and I were craving. The lobster is for sure a fair price and very fresh. The oysters with or without the delicious hot sauces provided were excellent, and the shrimp… well i finished those without a single regret.”

Patrick Rivers

Carolina Beach, NC

“Wowza! What amazing food and service! This location is wonderful! We had the best service from Kelli – she was so accommodating to our kids. I’d come back forever for the food, but the service from Kelli made the experience amazing!”

Kelly Burich

Raleigh, NC

“We love Shuckin’ Shack! We frequent this place a lot. The food is always awesome and fresh as well as the service always being amazing…The servers always engage my daughter and make her feel special. One of our favorite servers (they are all wonderful), Noah, gifted my daughter a little Iron Man figurine because they talk superheroes when we are in…We love it here and will keep coming and couldn’t recommend it more!”

Carol Ann

Surf City, NC

OUR TEAM

A wise man once said, “It takes a village to run a successful seafood franchise.”
…OK, nobody ever said that, but meet OUR village! Here are the people who keep Shuckin’ Shack humming like a well-oiled vessel for all our Franchise Owners, including (possibly) YOU!

Matt Piccinin: Co-Founder

-Led build-out and day-to-day operations of our original Shuckin’ Shack location

-“Big ideas” guy whose carpentry and design passions shine through in every Shuckin’ Shack build-out

-Recognized as Entrepreneur of the Year

-Keeps the party going by helping Franchise Owners get what they need to succeed!

Sean Cook: Co-Founder

- Started and ran several businesses prior to launching Shuckin’ Shack

-Contributes to brand direction and messaging

-Member of the Shuckin’ Shack Board of Directors

-Winner of multiple awards, including Entrepreneur of the Year

-Passionate about environmental conservation

Jonathan Weathington: CEO

-Joined Shuckin’ Shack in 2014 as Director of Franchise Development/CEO

-Master’s Degree in International & Global Studies from NC State University

-Dedicated to helping Franchise Owners provide exceptional customer service to their guests

-Recently featured on the cover of FSR Magazine and quoted in Business North Carolina, Nation’s Restaurant News, and Franchise Times

Bill Bartlett: COO

-Oversees day-to-day operational performance quality

-Spearheads our innovative training program

-Has opened over 160 restaurants on 7 different continents

-COO of Planet Hollywood, Hard Rock Cafe, and Tavistock Restaurants

Darren Keeler: VP of Marketing

-Handles effective execution of social media ads, automated email campaigns, and print media ads

-Provides emotional as well as marketing supports to maintain high morale system-wide

-Creates and implements innovative Franchise Owner promotional directives

-Provides small-detail support for soft and grand opening events

Nancy Tully: Controller

-Worked for another firm doing bookkeeping for Shuckin' Shack since 2008

-Joined Shuckin' Shack in December of 2018

-Keeps everyone in line and provides excellent financial oversight and office management

WE’RE COMMITTED TO SUSTAINABILITY

We need to get serious for a minute here. 

Oysters and other sea life need our help to stay well-stocked and plentiful for future generations of seafood lovers. That’s why Shuckin’ Shack is committed to serving only sustainably-sourced, domestic seafood that has been caught responsibly by our vast network of certified vendors.

Through our partnership with the James Beard Foundation’s Smart Catch Program, our work with the Oyster Shell Recycling Program, and our Ocean Friendly Establishment certification, we are dedicated to upholding the quality and sustainability of the seafood we serve our guests.

Shuckin' Shack Seafood Franchise's sustainable model icon.

AWARDS

Shuckin' Shack Seafood Restaurant Franchise 2019 Winner icon.

Best in Seafood

Wake County Living Readers Choice

Seafood franchise restaurants Rowan County's "Best in Seafood" winner icon.

Best in Seafood

Rowan County

"Best Taste Award" winner icon for the Seafood Franchise Industry.

Best Taste Award

Share the Table

"Best Seafood Restaurant" winner icon for the Seafood Restaurant Franchise Industry.

Best Seafood Restaurant

Summerville Journal Scene

"Best Oysters" winner icon for the Seafood Franchise Industry.

Best Oysters

Encore Magazine

"Best in Seafood" winner icon for the Seafood Franchise Industry.

Best in Seafood

Forsyth County News

"Best New Restaurant" winner icon for the Seafood Restaurant Franchise Industry.

Best New Restaurant

North Brunswick Chamber of Commerce

"Best Raw Bar" winner icon for the Seafood Restaurant Franchise Industry.

Best Raw Bar

Wilmington Magazine

"Top 22 Seafood Dives in America" winner icon for the Seafood Franchise Restaurants.

Top 22 Seafood Dives in America

Coastal Living Magazine

"Best Bloody Marys 'Shack Attack'" winner icon for the Seafood Franchise Restaurants.

Best Bloody Marys ‘Shack Attack’

Party Wilmington

Be the captain of your own ship as a Shuckin’ Shack Franchise Owner.
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