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Street Talk: FT quizzes conference attendees


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Kenny Truong

Kenny Truong

Kenny Truong
Truong Capital LLC

When it comes to the economy in the next year, are you optimistic or pessimistic?

I believe it’s going to be a positive year.  People with savings spend extra income elsewhere. The economy is actually doing well, like jewelry is blowing up and the food industry follows.

How do you feel about the current presidential campaign?

It exposes the vulnerability of our problem areas and it lets us know as investors and entrepreneurs which direction to take.


Shashi Mirpuri, Chris Krogh
Squar Milner LLP

When it comes to the economy in the next 1-2 years are you optimistic or pessimistic?

Very optimistic.  The economy is doing well, franchise in particular. Optimistic in our firm. Five years ago we weren’t even in the top 100, now we’re ranked in the 70ish area, which puts us in a good spot in the food and beverage industry. Even when the economy turns, franchise food and beverage sits in the middle.  It’s well placed. Types we see here tend to do well.

How do you feel about the current presidential campaign?

SM: Disappointed.
CK: Scared.

What are you hearing at this conference about the state of the capital markets, and franchise lending and financing in particular?

There’s a lot of money that needs to be placed and is just waiting for the right concept.  The competition has been whittled down. A lot of these franchises make good investments.


Mihir Kothari,  Aatish Jamal, Tito Shah
IPE Holdings

When it comes to the economy in the next year are you optimistic or pessimistic?

For our line of work we’re optimistic and for our style of restaurants. We’re focused more on alcohol sales. We own the Tilted Kilts. If there is a decline in the economy we see a growth. We see a steady incline.

How do you feel about the current presidential campaign?

AJ: Trump’s an idiot.  
TS: Might be good for the taxes.

What’s a current trend you find will benefit your business?

The sports bar business trend.  Lounges have turned to sports bars.  Sports bars are a growing concept for us.


Laurie Harris

Laurie Harris, Sheryl Coyne-Batson, Melissa Doolin-Koehne

Laurie Harris, Sheryl Coyne-Batson, Melissa Doolin-Koehne
TDn2K

When it comes to the economy in the next year are you optimistic or pessimistic?

Lukewarm. Our data that we’re showing says sales are up, but not significantly. It’s not going to be a great year, but it’s not going to be a bad year.

What’s a current trend you find will benefit your business?

People’s appetite for data. It’s essential.

What are you hearing at this conference about the state of the capital markets, and franchise lending and financing in particular?

More and more people are asking for data to tie into each other. You can’t just look at one aspect. You have to look at the bigger picture.


Andrew Johnson,Joseph Marchese
CAN Capital

James McCoy
Budgyt.com

When it comes to the economy in the next year are you optimistic or pessimistic?

JaM: Optimistic. All my clients are up 30 percent since last year.

How do you feel about the current presidential campaign?

JoM: It’s a joke.  
JaM: I think there is actually going to be change.

What are you hearing at this conference about the state of the capital markets, and franchise lending and financing in particular?

We’re seeing a lot of lenders being very aggressive. Great business models and great leadership.


Gregory Evans

Gregory Evans, left, of Empire and Melvin Branch of BMO Harris

L. Melvin Branch
BMO Harris

Gregory Evans
Empire Business Brokers

When it comes to the economy in the next year are you optimistic or pessimistic?

GE: Optimistic. The market for franchise QSR is expanding. Growth in middle managers.  
LMB: If I have any pessimism it will be on who is elected.

How do you feel about the current presidential campaign?

GE:  Holy crap it depends on who wins.  

What are you hearing at this conference about the state of the capital markets, and franchise lending and financing in particular?

Plenty of money around.

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