Industry News | April 6, 2008

From the Floor: Dine America Kicks Off in Houston

QSR magazine’s 5th annual executive idea exchange, Dine America, begins today, as operators and executives from across the country gather to be informed and inspired by some of the foodservice industry’s top leaders.

The two-day event, hosted in Houston, Texas, at the Hilton Americas Hotel Downtown, kicks off tonight with a cocktail reception at 6 p.m. The evening’s highlight will be the premier sponsor event hosted by the drive-thru software company Hyperactive Technologies where the company will debut never-before-seen products to attendees. With more than 250 operators set to attend the event, QSR is expected to hit record attendance numbers this year. Just in the first day of registration, Jerry Newman, author of My Secret Life on the McJob, Phil Friedman, president of McAlister’s Deli, and Aslam Khan, CEO of Falcon Holdings, Church’s Chicken’s largest franchisee group, have arrived.

The event’s coordinator Kevin Donaldson also expects strong attendance from local owners and operators over the next two days. “We may have upwards of 40 or 50 people from the local market just walk into the show,” he says. “Last year we had about 20, and this year it’s looking a lot heavier.”

Donaldson attributes the strong local turnout to the event’s location, calling Houston “a huge restaurant with a lot of independents and a lot of chains calling it home.”

Tomorrow’s agenda includes a keynote address by Jerry Newman, educational sessions ranging from government regulations affecting the hospitality industry to green building, and a premier sponsor event hosted by Coca-Cola.

QSR magazine and its Web site are the leading sources of news and information about the $180 billion-plus quick-service industry. For more than 10 years, QSR has defined this market, which includes traditional fast food, fast-casual dining, coffee, snacks, full-service takeaway, concessions, convenience stores, and related segments of the foodservice industry.

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