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Domino’s to Deliver With Rad Power E-Bikes

Domino’s Pizza is giving its U.S. franchisees the option of using custom electric bicycles through a new partnership with Seattle-based Rad Power Bikes. Domino’s says electric bikes are often a better solution to the traffic congestion and parking hassles that are inherent with urban pizza delivery.

Eat 182 Wings, Win Free Food for Year at Apple Texas

If you’re swinging through any of the 62 Applebee’s locations owned by Apple Texas, you can take a stab at a gut-busting challenge: Get free food for a year if you can eat more wings than a 127-pound mother of four.

C Squared Writes $100,000 Out to Charities

C Squared Advisors recently announced an inaugural donation of more than $100,000 to benefit 15-plus charities nationwide.

Sustainability Strategy: Think Ahead, Remember the Money

B.Good puts a lot of effort into sustainability, and its head farmer and sustainability leader has some advice.

Only 5.3 Percent of ‘Zees Cross 100-unit Mark, Says FranData

Only 16 percent of U.S. franchises, meanwhile, have more than 100 units, and a mere 4 percent have 500-plus locations. These were some of the FranData numbers shared by David Barr, chairman of the International Franchise Association, during his industry update at the Faegre Baker Daniels Franchise Summit last week.

Ruby Tuesday Must Recapture ‘Brand Love,’ NRD's COO Says

Speaking last week at the Faegre Baker Daniels Franchise Summit in Minneapolis, Susan Beth, NRD’s chief operating officer, noted in the subsequent two years since the firm took Ruby Tuesday private it’s been focused on harnessing dormant devotion to the brand and improving the guest experience.

Double Whammy Hits a Perkins Franchisee

Franchisee Bill Kane’s Pittsburgh-based company and his Memphis-based franchisor Perkins & Marie Callender’s LLC have filed for protection from creditors under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.

Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Takes on Self-Improvement Approaching 35

We’ve all been there: that moment you say, “Oh my gosh, I’m seriously turning 35?” Beef 'O' Brady's is taking that milestone in stride.

Whimsy Cookie Steps Out to Texas Via Mother/Daughter Pair

Sharon Hicks and her daughter Sheridan Gleason were looking for a business they could do together, and they found Whimsy Cookie Co., a young franchise based in Memphis. Their first store is set to open in Southlake, Texas, a suburb of Dallas/Fort Worth, by the end of August/first of September.

At 1,200 Units, No Time to Celebrate for Kona Ice Boss

Kona Ice, the shaved-ice food truck franchise, just passed the 1,200-unit mark, only 18 months after another big milestone. CEO Tony Lamb explains some of the reasons in his trademark amusing way.

At Christian Bros., Using Tools Rather Than Talking About Them

If auto repair franchises are running a mad dash to improve their technician training—and they definitely are, as learned when reporting an auto aftermarket story this month— then Christian Brothers Automotive is leading the pack.

Overhaul of Maaco’s Cert Process Paying Off, Exec Says

When Bob Benjamin became Maaco’s new president about a year ago, one of his first moves was to ask for a complete overhaul of the auto repair franchise’s certification process. It’s beginning to pay off, according to the man tapped to head up the project.

Taco John’s Innovates Around Legacy Heritage

Taco John's CEO Jim Creel said there is a lot going on as the brand turns 50. While nothing will change the core concept, the brand is adding some polish.

Multi-brand Sun Holdings Hits 1,000, CEO Sees More Ahead

Guillermo Perales and Sun Holdings opened the group’s 150th Popeyes restaurant in July in its home market of Dallas, Texas, bringing the company’s store total to 1,000 across nine brands spanning food and retail.

BoConcept Sees Americans Embracing Modern Design

As farmhouse chic and eclectic clutter are (finally) on the wane in American home design, Danish furniture builder and international franchise retailer BoConcept hopes Americans are finally starting to embrace the clean lines and painstakingly simple modern design trends that are so popular in other countries.

McDonald’s Sees Strong Results Amid Market Share ‘Street Fight’

McDonald's saw some impressive growth in the second quarter, but continues to be challenged by the market share "street fight."

Arby’s Beams Up Secret Menu for Area 51 “Raid”

Nope, I’m not having a stroke or dreaming, Arby’s is really launching a top-secret menu to the hilarious sounding “raid” on the U.S. government’s Area 51 that will include one of the PR savvy brand’s food trucks to dive conspiracy-first into the fun.

Motorcross ‘Superwoman’ Backed by Dad’s Fibrenew Franchise

When Kassie Boone heads to Sturgess, South Dakota, in early August to perform at the iconic annual motorcycle rally, she’s likely to roll out her latest favorite trick. “Call it a one-handed Superman,” she says, describing the hair-raising trick shown in the photo nearby before correcting herself. “Or call it the Superwoman.”

Buyers of 13 Mr. Gatti’s Stores Claim They Were Misled

Two men who bought 13 corporate stores from Mr. Gatti’s Pizza last September for $4 million have filed a complaint against the franchisor, claiming executives did not disclose financial problems at the firm that led to a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in January.

With Fresh Capital, Slim Chickens ‘Ready to Take Over the World’

From an inauspicious beginning to a fresh capital infusion, Slim Chickens' founder says they're ready for a big push to the next level.

Legal Eagle Talks Disputes, ‘Demise’ of Mom-and-Pop Operator

Quentin Wittrock has seen plenty of evolution in the franchise industry during his 32 years as an attorney with Minneapolis firm Gray Plant Mooty, perhaps the most impactful and far-reaching being the rise of the large multi-unit operator.

Kahala Helps Guide System With National Delivery Deal

The jump into delivery for Kahala Brands started organically, but now it's being standardized with the first of many national contracts.

Restaurant Association Takes Job Training to Prison Inmates

The restaurant industry is uniquely suited to provide jobs for people transitioning out of the prison system, says Rob Gifford, and with funding from the U.S. Department of Labor, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation is launching a new program aimed at doing just that.

Cookie or Talk Trigger? Carstar Speaker Explains

“Nobody here has ever said, Hey, let me tell you about this perfectly adequate experience I just had,” said Jay Baer, a speaker at the Carstar annual convention in Chicago last week. Rather, owners should try to generate a “talk trigger.”

Hot Cheetos vs S’Mores at Wetzel's Twisted Kitchen

Decisions, decisions. That’s the conundrum when visiting Wetzel's Pretzels Twisted Kitchen at its headquarters in Pasadena, California, and choosing among the concoctions the food stylist and marketing team are whipping up on a visit this week.

Holly, the Drive-Thru AI, at Work in Good Times

Behind the sliding glass window of a typical fast-food drive-thru is a chaotic place. Employees sitting there have to process orders, hand off food and listen to all manner of customers through background noise, music and passing traffic. Valyant AI says it has largely solved the order-taking task with a new digital employee named Holly.

Did Dan Rowe Find the ‘Next Big Thing’ at Ike’s?

Fransmart founder and CEO Dan Rowe chases big dreams further than most in the restaurant industry, and he's loving Ike's Love and Sandwiches.

Calculating Delivery's Impact on Restaurant Margins

There’s a running conversation about delivery’s impact on restaurant margins, and now investment advisor Hedgeye Risk Management has crunched the numbers in a range of scenarios, including how much delivery impacts the total volume, as well as incrementality and various commission rates.

Home Franchise Concepts Changes Hands, Joins JM Family

Trilantic North America announced this week the sale of its majority stake in Home Franchise Concepts to JM Family Enterprises, a $16 billion Florida-based automotive company that’s one of the largest independent distributors of Toyota vehicles.

New Parent, First Acquisition for Deka Lash Founders

The founders of Deka Lash are doubling down in the franchise business, creating a new parent company—Look Good Brands—and making their first acquisition, adding the five-unit Legends Boxing.

Accessible Websites: Compliance and a Big Opportunity too

Americans with Disabilities Act web guidelines aren't just a matter of compliance. Keeping websites usable by everyone is just smart business.

After Fire, Mountain Mike’s Operator Vowed to Rebuild

Last Friday Sonu Chandi, president of Chandi Hospitality, and his brother opened their 4,500-square-foot Mountain Mike’s Pizza restaurant on Cleveland Avenue in Santa Rosa, California. In October 2017, their store was one of 55 businesses destroyed in the Tubbs Fire.

Multi-unit Signings for Blaze Pizza, Nekter in Deal Tracker

Twice a month I’m plucking the key details from dozens of multi-unit franchise development agreements to give you everything you need to know to stay informed and, of course, keep an eye on what the competition is doing. That's the Franchise Times Deal Tracker.

Bryant Builds Real Estate Business Helping Franchisees

Adrienne Bryant's firm has a focus on franchising. She found she liked the franchise model: that franchisors give the franchisee a process to follow.

Rising Food Costs Set to Buffet Restaurants

Food costs are a big deal in the restaurant world, and a new report from Wells Fargo analyst Jon Tower shows that many of the key restaurant inputs are getting more expensive in recent months, with trends suggesting that commodity prices are set to be a major factor in the coming year.

Esports Franchises Attract Another NFL Owner

Esports franchises are big business beyond gamers and the Wilf family, owners of the Minnesota Vikings, is getting in on the action.

Tortilla Shortage a Supreme Headache for Taco Bell

Taco Bell is facing a long, long month as it grapples with a tortilla shortage.

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop Primed for Growth under NRD

It happens in every growth business at some point: The realization that what got you here won’t get you to the next phase of the business.

Fear Is Biggest Creativity Killer, Says KFC’s CMO

If you're a fan of KFC's hilarious and sometimes controversial ad campaigns, meet Global CMO Catherine Tan-Gillespie and read her thoughts on creativity.

It Rained on Their Parade but Not Their Pride

It was the Pride Parade in Chicago yesterday, and the fashions were only part of the scene. Kicking off the annual journey down Halsted Street, the heart of Chicago’s Boystown and LGBTQ community, was Grand Marshall Lori Lightfoot making history as the city’s first openly gay mayor.

Xponential to Bring Female-only Fitness Studios to Saudi Arabia

A master franchise agreement with Xponential Fitness will bring Club Pilates, Pure Barre, CycleBar, YogaSix and AKT studios to Saudi Arabia, where women-only gyms have been gaining popularity since the government began licensing them in 2017 as part of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman’s Vision 2030 plan.

FAT Brands Buys Elevation Burger But Financing Comes Slowly

Two key words are behind FAT Brands’ acquisition of Elevation Burger—geography and organic—but a third word, financing, is proving costly and difficult to obtain.

Cheba Hut Censures Quiznos Over Mushroom Sub

At this point, the franchise industry is used to some brand-on-brand ribbing. We watch with bated breath for the next clapback from Arby’s or Wendy’s on Twitter. Cheba Hut, however, spared the niceties and the corporate speak.

Board for McD ‘Zees Makes Case Against ‘Huge’ Lawsuit

The National Owners Association, the McDonald’s franchisees who famously formed last fall the first independent group to address what they see as corporate missteps, explained why it has “elected to not pursue legal action” against the brand, according to a missive from its board to members sent yesterday.

Yogurtland Heads for Its Ninth Country, Indonesia

Business partners Franseda Natalio, William Siawira and Erwin Sujono, under the auspices of Yogurtland Indonesia Global Mandiri, inked a deal to open at least 10 stores in the Southeast Asian nation over the next three years.

Wells Fargo Dives into Consumer Delivery Trends

Data is everything for restaurants trying to make sense of third-party delivery, among other off-premises channels. In its latest survey of 515 delivery customers, Wells Fargo Senior Analyst Jon Tower and Associate Analyst William Miller found that promotions are a greater driver of behavior among respondents, with delivery fees less of a motivator than its previous surveys.

Goddard School Becomes a Family Affair for Sibling Operators

When the O'Briens' success with The Goddard School started generating a few questions at family dinners, it wasn't long before everyone was involved.

Imitation Is Not Flattery to HomeVestors' Boss

HomeVestors, the “We Buy Ugly Houses” franchise, is warning consumers about imitators who are not in the system but target house sellers with copycat slogans.

Franchisee-turned-CEO Grows Cookie Cutters Haircuts to 100

Neal Courtney’s daughter “was an absolute nightmare when it was time to get her hair cut,” he says, and the 3-year-old “hated” going to the salon. That changed when Courtney and wife Alexis brought Nieve to a local Cookie Cutters Haircuts for Kids shop in suburban Salt Lake City.

New CEO Feels at Home in Sola Salon Studios Post

Christina Russell, newly named CEO of Sola Salon Studios, finds common threads between her latest appointment and her former CEO jobs at Pure Barre and Camp Bow Wow before that.
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