2024 plans call for deploying 7 – 9 Infinite Kitchens (automation capable of producing 500 bowls/hour) into new units & another 2 – 4 in retrofits.
Consumers have been resilient, but sentiment remains weak by historic standards, with many consumers feeling economically distressed & pessimistic, pressuring discretionary spending. However, sequential monthly traffic improvements during the quarter reflected investments to improve its guest experience & marketing investment to emphasize the chain’s strong value proposition across its dayparts.
Damien Sanders recently graduated college with an economics degree, and now he works at Restaurant Research LLC. However, he didn’t start out as a hot shot Analyst – rather, he cut his teeth working at Zaxby’s & Bojangles during college, learning many life lessons along the way. In this Q&A, Damien explains why the fast-food industry provides such a good launching pad for young people prepping for a career…
The restaurant franchise finance asset class currently benefits from strong unit-level sales and food cost deflation. Loan collateral has held up well generally speaking and the economy & capital markets are certainly stronger than the Great Recession that started around 2008. In this post, we conduct a Q&A with the head of a prominent franchise finance group & present some supporting data about why it may be time for lenders to jump back into the pool.
Jack reported strong results, indicating that it is still performing well with higher-income consumers & evenly across all other deciles of income. However, uncertainty remains as it relates to price elasticity in California given the need to hike menu prices in that market next year to address the AB1228 minimum wage hike to $20/hr.
We had never heard of BIGGBY® COFFEE until a team member’s spouse declared: “BIGGBY® COFFEE is going to be the next Starbucks!” Naturally, that got our attention as this is not something you hear every day. We pressed Julie our “source” – why would she say this about Biggby’s?
Wally just got back from Vegas where he attended the Restaurant Finance Monitor conference to escape the tyranny of raising his young children, get to a warm climate, shmooze, lose some money at the Casinos, and also take the pulse of the state of restaurant finance which he outlines in this post.
CAVA’s management attributed its astounding growth to the broad appeal & proven portability of its innovative Mediterranean concept which more than offset ongoing consumer headwinds. CAVA is creating & defining the next major cultural cuisine category with a substantial white space opportunity. Further, management suggested that online life has failed to replace the real-life emotional connections that humans crave as consumers seek restaurants that make them feel welcomed, warm & cared for.
Shake Shack’s 3Q sales began strong in July before moderating through the end of September. October sales reaccelerated with same-Shack sales increasing to over +3.5% (improving to flat traffic) despite transitioning from a high single-digit to a low single-digit menu price increase.
Since its 2019 IPO, Dutch Bros has increased its AUVs by +20% & opened 9 new states. The chain surpassed $1B in LTM system sales during 2Q22.