The business financing climate is getting sunnier with new lending models.
Growth
It’s no secret that running a restaurant is a risky business. The fact that many restaurants will ultimately fail early in their existence is not lost on most entrepreneurs, and yet they carry on anyway in hopes that their restaurant dreams can be made true.   The risk inherent to opening a...
Promotions
In 2007, Togo’s, a 242-unit, 40-year-old West Coast sandwich chain, was purchased by San Francisco equity firm Mainsail Partners, which quickly saw a problem. “Throughout the system there were six logos on the exterior signage,” says Renae Scott, vice president of branding and marketing for Togo’s...
Denise Lee Yohn sets certain standards brands must meet for social media.
Denise Lee Yohn: QSR’s Marketing Guru
As a child I was a geek who desperately wanted to be popular. In my quest to be cool, I wanted to copy the popular kids’ rebellious behaviors like dying my hair and going coatless in the dead of winter. When I expressed these aspirations to my mother, she admonished me by saying, “Just because...
Read Full Story // read more about: Marketing, Promotions
Businesses can thrive by planning strategically for the future.
Growth
After running nuclear reactors for submarines, Loren Goodridge was ready to be his own boss. Navy alum Goodridge became a Subway franchisee in 1992, and has since been recognized for his strategic planning skills by Subway CEO Fred DeLuca and grown his franchise company to 20 units. Armed with...
Read Full Story // read more about: Subway, Franchising
Energy Kitchen offers healthy dishes like bison and ostrich burgers.
Emerging Concepts
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To encourage return visits, a fast-casual restaurant that serves only healthy food must make taste paramount, says Anthony Leone, founder of Energy Kitchen. That’s why at Energy Kitchen, the menu includes nontraditional ingredients like bison and ostrich. “We work very hard on recipes,” Leone says...
Executives must identify and work on strengthening their weaknesses.
Human Resources
Chris Newcomb, cofounder, president, and CEO of Newk’s Express Café, would have called himself an understanding manager. His two co-owners, however, would have described it differently—something along the lines of too forgiving. “They came to me and said, ‘You sure do give people a lot of chances...
Read Full Story // read more about: Popeyes, Newk's Eatery
Fine dining foods are finding their way to quick-service menus.
Marc Halperin: Resident F&B Expert
In 2015, the single most popular dish on quick-serve restaurant menus will be a sumptuous curried goat sandwich served with fried lentils and a crispy tamarind-orange flatbread. Shortly thereafter, thick, frosty duck confit milkshakes and turnip tots will take the fast food world by storm. Then, by...
Americans deserve engagement instead of advertisement overload.
Outside Insights
How many advertising messages is the average American exposed to every day? When you consider almost every surface we see during the course of our day is invariably plastered with advertising, the numbers are high. From newspapers, magazines, billboards, and product logos, the acceleration of...
Quick service brands can explore innovative potato dishes like poutine.
A New Plan for Potatoes
What can I possibly tell you about potatoes, dear quick-serve industry professional, that you don’t already know? It’s not as though you’re unacquainted with America’s favorite starch. You may even know that it’s the world’s fourth-largest food crop, trailing behind only rice, corn, and wheat,...
Quick service restaurant chains invest in new growth with new finance and franchise strategies.
A Finance Refresh
Like much of the rest of the economy, the 2008 economic meltdown brought a massive slow-down to the quick-service franchise industry. The combination of tightfisted money lenders and general economic uncertainty put franchise businesses in a near impossible position when it came to accessing...
10 Challenges for Fast-Casual Leaders
While the fast-casual category continues to be the fastest-growing industry sector, the road in 2015 will be bumpy. We will see constant change and challenges around every corner. For industry leaders, there are issues that will keep even the most seasoned executive awake at night.  Here is my top...
Quick service brands can explore innovative potato dishes like poutine.
A New Plan for Potatoes
What can I possibly tell you about potatoes, dear quick-serve industry professional, that you don’t already know? It’s not as though you’re unacquainted with America’s favorite starch. You may even know that it’s the world’s fourth-largest food crop, trailing behind only rice, corn, and wheat,...
Quick service restaurant executives run charity effort to raise funds for cancer research.
A Personal Connection
When Lori Newcomb found out she had stage III ovarian cancer last year, she made it her mission to learn more about the disease and help other women fighting the same battle. She sat down with her husband, Chris Newcomb, cofounder and CEO of Southern quick-service chain Newk’s Eatery, and together...
Quick service restaurant franchise owner used work ethic to climb from store manager.
The Franchisee Fast Track
Having started as a sandwich maker with Subway when he was 18 years old, Gurpreet Singh has spent nearly half his life in the quick-service industry. Now a Checkers franchisee, Singh has spent time in every quick-serve job imaginable: line worker, manager, general manager, and, today, franchisee....