Industry News
Convenience stores are increasingly taking a larger slice out of the quick-serve pie with fresh food offerings. It’s become such a lucrative business for C-stores that Sheetz, the Pennsylvania-based C-store chain that this week opened its 500th location, is planning stores designed more as fast...
More Wall Street investors look to buy stock in fast casual and quick service concepts.
Fast Casual
When fast-casual chain Zoës Kitchen Inc. debuted on the New York Stock Exchange last April, the Plano, Texas–based Mediterranean-style eatery recorded its initial public offering at $87.5 million. Satisfying an investor appetite for investments within the trendy fast-casual space, Zoës’ strong...
Quick service restaurants update dessert menu options to cater to customer demand.
Menu Innovations
Desserts have been part of the limited-service restaurant landscape for decades. Whether it’s cookies, cakes, pies, ice cream, or other goodies, consumers continue to seek these typically indulgent items to add to their meal or as a stand-alone treat. In recent years, operators have added numerous...
Quick service brands can use big data to plan strategic growth.
Outside Insights
Selling food for profit dates back to the evolution of human society itself: from outside eateries in ancient Rome and China to the evolution of fine dining in France to the mushrooming of the fast-food industry, drive thru, and takeaway inns in the last decade. Restaurants have changed along with...
Quick service brands invest in employee incentives to keep turnover low.
Human Resources
Rich Hicks has reached the height of success in the restaurant industry, with his quick-service concepts being heralded with accolades and catapulting him into the spot of a top-ranked entrepreneur. And like so many other leaders in the business, his career began at the bottom, working as a...
Quick service restaurants debate adding all day breakfast hours.
Industry News
While breakfast may not be the quick-service industry’s biggest daypart, there could be enough demand for breakfast foods to become a daylong staple. According to the National Restaurant Association’s (NRA) 2015 Restaurant Industry Forecast, seven out of 10 consumers say they want restaurants to...
Industry News
It’s the time of year when limited-time offers with a seafood slant start migrating onto menus. Quick-serve operators have long served fish sandwiches and other seafood specials during Lent, a six-week period between Ash Wednesday and Easter in which many consumers reduce their consumption of...
Industry News
A number of quick serves are rolling out limited-time seafood offers for Lent, but Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s aim to raise the stakes with a new seafood item that is a bit saintly—and maybe a bit sinful. “We know that fish is a must-carry item during Lent so we typically have a fish sandwich product...
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 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 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...
Quick service brands add sustainable seafood items to fight ocean climate change.
Sea Change
Though U.S. consumption is well below other proteins today, seafood will likely be an increasingly important part of the American diet in the years to come. The country’s population is predicted to grow by 89 million between 2010 and 2050 to 401 million people. More people require more food—and...
Quick service restaurant giant Taco Bell innovates breakfast menu with biscuit taco.
Taco Bell Is At It Again
Brian Niccol is a man on a mission. In the nearly two years since Niccol was tabbed as Taco Bell’s president, and in the three months since he became chief executive, the Mexican-inspired quick-service restaurant chain has been an innovation engine for its parent company, Yum! Brands. Last year...
Quick service and fast casual brands adapt to menu labeling regulations.
Putting It All Out There
Consumers looking over menuboards at their favorite quick-serve restaurants are going to notice some changes in 2015, as the calorie-labeling mandate that was created in 2010 as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was finalized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in...