Taco Bell Franchise History

Taco Bell Franchise History

The Taco Bell Story: From a Single Drive-Thru Stand to a Global Brand

Taco Bell, one of the most popular Mexican-inspired fast food chains in the world, has come a long way from its humble beginnings. The company was founded in 1962 by Glen Bell, a former Marine who had a passion for Mexican cuisine. In this blog, we will take a closer look at the history of Taco Bell and how it evolved into the massive brand that it is today.

The Origins of Taco Bell

Bell started his career in the food industry by selling hot dogs and hamburgers at a drive-in restaurant in San Bernardino, California. He was fascinated by Mexican cuisine, and he began experimenting with various Mexican dishes and ingredients. He eventually came up with his own version of the taco, which he started selling at his drive-in stand. This simple idea proved to be a huge success, and it wasn’t long before Bell was opening up his own taco stand, which he called Taco Bell.

Expanding the Brand

Taco Bell was an instant success, and the demand for Bell’s tacos grew rapidly. He soon started opening up more locations, and by 1967, there were 100 Taco Bell locations across the United States. The company continued to grow and expand, and by the late 1970s, it had become one of the largest fast food chains in the country.

The company faced a few challenges along the way, such as a shortage of beef in the 1970s and a decline in sales in the 1980s. However, Taco Bell was able to overcome these challenges and continue growing. In 1986, the company was acquired by PepsiCo, which helped to give it the resources it needed to expand even further.

Taco Bell Franchise Goes Global

In the 1990s, Taco Bell began to expand internationally, opening its first international location in Canada in 1988. The company then expanded into other countries, including the United Kingdom, Japan, and Australia. Today, Taco Bell has over 7,000 locations in over 25 countries, making it one of the largest Mexican-inspired fast food chains in the world.

Innovating the Menu

Taco Bell has always been known for its innovative menu, which has helped it to stand out from its competitors. Throughout the years, the company has introduced many new menu items, including the Crunchwrap Supreme, the Chalupa, and the Doritos Locos Taco. In recent years, the company has also been at the forefront of the plant-based food trend, offering a variety of vegetarian and vegan options.

Staying Relevant and Ahead of the Curve

Despite its success, Taco Bell has never rested on its laurels. The company has continued to evolve and change with the times, always seeking new and innovative ways to stay relevant. For example, the company has embraced technology, offering customers the ability to order online and through its mobile app. It has also embraced sustainability, working to reduce its impact on the environment.


Taco Bell has come a long way from its humble beginnings as a single drive-thru stand. Today, the company is a global brand with over 7,000 locations in over 25 countries. Despite its success, Taco Bell has never lost sight of its roots, always striving to innovate and stay relevant. From its innovative menu to its embrace of technology and sustainability, Taco Bell continues to be one of the most beloved and successful fast food chains in the world.

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