Subway expects to close 500 locations in North America this year, but it will still be the largest fast-food chain in the world when it's all over. And it hopes to open another 1,000 locations in other countries, to boot.
The company expects the closures to come in response to new policies that will require franchisees to invest more money into their own operations. Some of that money will go toward upgrading stores with the company's latest design, which will feature self-service kiosks, modern decor and a soft-seating area with Wi-Fi and USB charging ports.
Subway closed 350 stores in 2016. Hundreds more closed last year, but Subway has yet to confirm the exact number. The company has more than 44,000 locations, so the closures are just 1 percent of its overall number. It has more than 50 locations in Western New York.