Shake Shack workers get in on IPO riches

Wall St. is salivating over Shake Shack

NEW YORK (CNNMoney)

It’s not just investors that made out like bandits Friday as Shake Shack ended its first day of trading 120% higher than its IPO price. Some of its workers made money, too.

Every Shake Shack (SHAK) manager got stock options Friday, CEO Randy Garutti told CNBC.

The company has 160 managers who also get revenue-sharing and health benefits. And its 1,450 hourly employees all make more than the local minimum wage.

Employees start at least $ 10 an hour in the New York metro area, where the chain has 16 restaurants. New York City’s minimum wage is $ 8.75 an hour.

Shake Shack, which has been profitable, said it will continue to pay above minimum wage even at the risk of earning less money, according to a regulatory filing.

Related: Make it a Double Shack. Shake Shack is up 120%!

“We believe that this enables us to attract a higher caliber employee and this translates directly to better guest service,” the company said.

Shake Shack didn’t respond to CNNMoney’s requests for comment.

It’s that kind of sentiment that workers at fast-food restaurants like McDonald’s (MCD) and Burger King would love to hear.

A growing movement has brought the issue of fair worker pay to the public’s mind. A group of fast-food workers first took to the streets of New York City two years ago, demanding $ 15 an hour. Since then, dozens of states and cities have raised the minimum wage for all workers, but the protesters haven’t had any luck in getting the big corporations to give across-the-board raises to its workers.

Related: McDead? More lousy results from McDonald’s

To be sure, while Shake Shack serves burgers and fries, it’s not exactly a fast-food chain. It bills itself as a “fast casual” restaurant with healthier options, just like Chipotle (CMG) and Panera (PNRA) do. A Shake Shack burger can cost twice as much as a Big Mac.

Wall Street is a fan. The company raised $ 105 million from the stock sale. And at Friday’s closing price of just under $ 46, Shake Shack is worth $ 1.63 billion. That’s a lot of money, but it’s still far behind McDonald’s market cap of nearly $ 90 billion.

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