Einstein Bros. Bagels

Wake Up Breakfast Proteins

There is an answer to the age-old question of which came first, the chicken or the egg.

It’s definitely the egg—at least when it comes to breakfast. Few morning menus are without them. But these days, chicken and another popular poultry protein, turkey, are increasingly popping up on a.m. menuboards at quick-service and fast-casual restaurants.

Where’s the Money Now?

Many are seeing glimmers of recovery, or even making their own opportunities.

Credit flowed so freely before the recession that people in the restaurant industry often use hyperbole to describe how easy it was to get financing before the collapse.

“I could have gotten my dog a loan three years ago,” says Paul Steck, president of Saladworks.

“The perception was, anyone who can breathe can borrow,” says Mitch Jacobs, founder of On Deck Capital, a lending technology company that works extensively with restaurant operators.

Heading Into Q4, Einstein Bros. Carries Momentum

Einstein Bros. Bagels announced that it is entering the fourth quarter of 2010 with a momentum cultivated from three quarters of transaction and franchising success.

James O’Reilly, chief concept officer for Einstein Bros., says the company wants to be the “fastest-growing fast-casual restaurant chain in America,” and that both organic transaction growth and franchising efforts are critical to that effort.

Despite the recent economic slump, O’Reilly says transactions over the last three quarters have satisfied company executives.

The 30-Day Challenge

Sharon Olson, president of Olson Communications, tests her will and waistline in a month-long experiment in which she only eats food from the top quick serves in the nation.

From Bail Outs to Burgers

One unlikely result of the recent financial crisis is a swell of ex-bankers trying their hands at running quick serves.

Amid the global financial crisis, with the world’s largest banks reporting losses in the billions of dollars, Duane Clark, a 24-year veteran of the commercial banking industry, did something he never expected to do: He opened a smoothie shop.

“I always swore I would never go into the restaurant business,” Clark says. “I always called it the beast. You live it, you drink it, you eat it—that’s your life.”

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