Blaze Pizza has 150 units in the pipeline.
Competition
All Rick and Elise Wetzel wanted was to have some pizza for lunch. It was a mid-2011 weekday, and the Wetzel’s Pretzels founders were enjoying their 17th year in the pretzel business, a year in which their concept would enjoy roughly $65 million in sales at 192 locations, according to Technomic...
Viral video campaigns like Smithfield's build marketing campaigns online.
Social Media
At Arby’s, it was “legendary detective” Bo Dietl delivering a meat slicer to a competitor’s drive-thru window, reminding viewers and Arby’s fans that many competitors don’t slice on site. At Quiznos, it was a look-alike of famed gymnastics coach Béla Károlyi rating its Chicken Bacon Dipper sandwich...
Subway's new payment processing program saves franchisees millions of dollars.
In the Store
Many brands are happy to leave credit-card processing to the pros, but sandwich chain Subway is going against the grain. The brand’s Independent Purchasing Cooperative (ipc), its purchase and supply chain management arm, recently brought all payment processing in house. The new system processes two...
Industry News
Thirty-five years ago, Taco Cabana opened its first restaurant in Midtown San Antonio. Soon, that original location will be the center of attention as Taco Cabana celebrates 35 years as the “Original Mexican Patio Café” and the grand re-opening of its newly remodeled first location.   To...
Zaxby's new Cobb Zalad offers premium fast casual menu item for a higher cost.
Industry News
The fast-casual category has been the fastest-growing restaurant segment over the past two years, according to market research firm Technomic, as operators in the category continue to effectively balance higher-quality, convenient foods with a more upscale environment. This success has come even as...
Industry News
Take-and-bake pizza chain Papa Murphy’s is on the search for a way to create a stronger brand image, and it’s doing just that with its new CREATE store design. The new restaurant model puts a spotlight on both personalization and transparency—literally—with an open kitchen layout that lets guests...
Your Pie franchisees build restaurant business by marketing healthy menu idea.
Franchising
After years of working in the furniture industry and spending time owning, operating, and eventually selling his stores, Paul Childers entered the quick-serve world in 2009 when a hot tip from a good friend turned Childers on to a new pizza concept called Your Pie. Today, Childers’s two franchised...
Managing daily cash flow and long-term finances is key to successful growth.
Outside Insights
In the quick-service industry, the path to success is straightforward: offering good-tasting, quality food prepared quickly in a clean and courteous environment. Companies that focus on the fundamentals of meeting these needs—hiring the right people, emphasizing teamwork, and meeting the evolving...
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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 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 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 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...
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...