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Paul Brown's Strategic Balancing Act at Inspire Brands

Paul Brown has begun his balancing act at the helm of Inspire Brands, which is now one of the largest owner-operators of restaurants out there with 1,700 company restaurants and 4,600 locations when including franchise operations.
02.12.2018

‘Music Paradigm’ Teaches Better Way to Wield Baton

I play the flute, trombone, piano and organ and sang in a symphonic choir, and my alternative career path, albeit never followed, was to be an orchestra conductor, so the Music Paradigm presentation today at the IFA’s annual conference was right up my alley.
02.12.2018

Young and Fresh, NextGen Finalists Make Their Pitches

All were young, fresh and impressive, but otherwise the 20 finalists competing in the NextGen competitition (said to be culled from 900 applicants from around the world) at the International Franchise Association annual convention Sunday were individually brash, confident, soft-spoken, intellectual, nervous, sloppily dressed or perfectly prepared.
02.12.2018

By Operators, for Operators—a Sneak Peek of FT Zor Awards

Charlotte Haigler Proctor likes to tell prospective franchisees, “I hope you’re not considering being an absentee owner.” She is one of the super-smart franchisees our edit team has been interviewing for the last several weeks, preparing stories for our March cover package, the Franchise Times Zor Awards. Here’s a sneak peek.
02.09.2018

10 Win Prestigious Franchise Times Dealmakers Awards

Franchise Times today announces winners of the 2018 Franchise Times Dealmakers awards, the sixth annual project recognizing the boldest players driving mergers and acquisitions in franchising.
02.09.2018

Continental Hotel Occupancy Still Rising, Shining

Even after several years of revenue and occupancy gains, new hotel construction and brand rollouts, U.S. hotel occupancy is still increasing as North American hoteliers in general see widespread gains in bookings across all travel segments.
02.09.2018

U.S. Restaurants Improve Sustainability Efforts

A new study from the National Restaurant Association shows that, on the whole, the U.S. restaurant industry is boosting sustainability efforts, which include energy-saving equipment, food waste reduction and water conservation.
02.09.2018

Meet the New Parent of Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings

With its $2.9 billion acquisition of Buffalo Wild Wings a done deal, Arby’s Restaurant Group renamed itself Inspire Brands Inc., the new multi-concept operator encompassing Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings and R Taco.
02.08.2018

Sentinel Capital Sells Huddle House

Sentinel Capital Partners sold family dining brand Huddle House Inc. to family office Elysium Management this week. The private equity firm acquired the Atlanta-based restaurant franchise in 2012 and had since helped guide it through a turnaround and roll out a remodeling program. The chain added 36 new locations to the map in fiscal year 2017—a record year of franchise expansion for the brand.
02.02.2018

The Gents Place Touts Growth, Investment From Dallas Cowboys Owner

Men’s grooming concept The Gents Place closed out its first full year of franchising having signed agreements that will bring 11 new locations to markets including Austin, Chicago, Houston and San Antonio. And to top it all off, the brand received a significant investment from Blue Star Innovation Partners, an investment venture for growth-stage companies founded by Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.
02.02.2018

Report: Franchise Sector to Outpace Overall Economy in ‘18

The franchise sector is expected to grow faster than the rest of the U.S. economy, according to a new report from the International Franchise Association, which was unveiled Monday at the Washington Post’s State of the Union Preview and delivered by Fastsign’s CEO Catherine Monson.
02.01.2018

Super Bowl at Minus 10? Bold North Says Bring It On

Since the largest franchise of them all—the National Football League—is in Minneapolis, also the world headquarters of Franchise Times, I’ve been talking with sources all week who have the same question: What in the world do people do when the Super Bowl will take place on a day forecast to be 10 degrees below overnight with a high of big fat zero on February 4 itself? So let me explain.
02.01.2018

Fazoli’s Trumpets Great Year-End Numbers

Things have been going very well at Fazoli’s as the country’s largest quick-service Italian chain continues its long growth streak in the wake of some dark times several years ago. The Kentucky-based company just announced an increase in same-store sales and foot traffic, as well as the signing of six new development agreements for new stores in several different states.
01.31.2018

MVS Pet Care Starts First At-Home Vet Service

As the owner of two dogs who are terrified of going to the vet, I am very excited to hear a company called MVS Pet Care is launching what it calls the first professional franchise network of house call veterinarians. This is a great idea, and definitely a game-changing idea for certain pet owners, which is a fast-growing part of the U.S. economy.
01.31.2018

With New App, 7-Eleven Joins the Delivery Game

As part of a “significant digital transformation,” convenience-store chain 7-Eleven is testing delivery and in-store pickup ordering at select Dallas stores with its new 7-ElevenNOW smartphone app.
01.26.2018

Please No, Burger King

Burger King launches another mega-burger that begs the question: are we heading into another caloric QSR arms race? This reporter hopes not.
01.25.2018

Wayback Burgers Celebrates Juicy Growth

On the heels of what it called a “monstrous and prosperous” Q4, Wayback Burgers is trumpeting its rapid growth and franchise development throughout 2017, in hopes of continuing the momentum throughout the new year.
01.25.2018

Pet Wants Is Exception to Slow-to-100 Rule

My recent blog post pointing out how few franchises make it to 100 units in a year or two, as so many young franchises claim they will, drew many responses, including some who thought I was being too negative to point out the statistics from Franchise Grade. But the president of Pet Wants Franchise System, Scott Hoots, called the numbers “sobering” and added his brand “had the opposite problem.”
01.19.2018

HomeVestors Names Ugliest House of 2017

We Americans love dramatic renovations, and HomeVestors—the brand behind We Buy Ugly Houses—has named The Ugliest House of the Year after Americans voted on five house makeovers completed by company’s independently owned and operated franchises.
01.19.2018

Resales Another Opportunity for New Franchise Owners

Buying an established franchise means everything is in place and you can hit the ground running with a mature business. But the same advantages can also be disadvantages, so due diligence is crucial say panelists at Franchise Expo South.
01.18.2018

Dear Subway, You Stink. Love, Freshii

A franchisee revolt at Subway over its $5 footlong promotion and declining sales has prompted Freshii to publish an open letter yesterday in the Chicago Tribune, offering a “sincere proposal,” as the letter said. One can only imagine Subway's response.
01.18.2018

Tony Roma's Opening First U.S. Franchise in Six Years

After six years without any new U.S. locations, Tony Roma's is back on the gas with West Palm Beach Opening.
01.17.2018

From the Cutting Room Floor, More Fast & Serious

We interviewed 40 C-level execs to put together our Fast & Serious package, which you can read in full in our January issue, but we gleaned a lot more that we weren’t able to include. So, here are three more thoughts on growing a franchise brand, sustainably.
01.12.2018

I Heart Mac & Cheese, and Short Ribs, and Crispy Chicken….

We’re suckers for good food photos, so our thanks goes to I Heart Mac & Cheese, a Boca Raton, Florida-based brand that just launched a national franchise program and has many beautiful photos plus a dauntingly long menu that seems destined to shrink—or whose name seems destined to expand.
01.12.2018

At Rachel’s Kitchen, a Shaq Sighting

Retired NBA star and Hall of Fame center Shaquille O'Neal stopped in for breakfast at Rachel's Kitchen, a bistro franchise concept in Las Vegas.
01.12.2018

Who will win the 2nd Annual Franchise Times Zor Awards?

Show your enthusiasm for the best franchises in the industry with the Franchise Times Zor Awards recognizing the best companies in 10 hot industry segments. This interactive awards program allows our readers to vote for their favorite brands in each of 10 categories
01.11.2018

MOD Pizza Raises $33 Million in Equity Capital to Fuel Growth

This latest funding round brings MOD Pizza's total equity capital raised to more than $185 million, financing the company said will help it bolster its presence in existing U.S. markets and in the United Kingdom.
01.10.2018

Patrick Doyle Out as Domino’s CEO

After eight years as Domino’s president and CEO, Patrick Doyle announced he is leaving the company on June 30 after several years of massive sales growth that brought the Michigan-based global pizza giant over the $10 billion mark in annual revenue.
01.10.2018

Pizza Hut Developing Fully Autonomous Delivery Vehicles With Toyota

Pizza Hut delivered a surprise at this year’s International Consumer Electronics Show with the announcement that the pizza giant has partnered with Toyota on the development of fully autonomous delivery vehicles with Toyota.
01.09.2018

From the Bomb Cyclone's Eye, a Warm Invitation

As the rest of the country experiences the bomb cyclone, which we here in Minnesota simply call winter (sorry, rest of the country), we’d like to invite you up to the perfect event for a minus-11 day: The Pirtek Snocross National, scheduled for today and tomorrow at Canterbury Park in Shakopee, a Minneapolis suburb.
01.05.2018

So You Say You’ll Have 100 Units in a Year or Two?

If I had a dollar for every young franchisor that says they’ll get to 100 units in a couple of years, I’d have a whole lot of dollars. In fact, I edit such predictions out of the stories we publish in Franchise Times because they almost never come true. A new report by FranchiseGrade backs me up.
01.05.2018

New Data Shows Troubling Trends for Pizza Hut

Changing consumer trends and increased competition are wreaking havoc in certain restaurant segments, and even though the pizza category remains hot, new consumer research shows Domino’s eating Pizza Hut’s lunch as the great pizza wars rage onward.
01.05.2018

Orangetheory ‘Zees: ‘We Don’t Feel Like Anyone Competes With Us’

Orangetheory Fitness tops this year’s Franchise Times Fast & Serious list, its 218 percent unit increase over the past three years evidence of CEO Dave Long’s smart growth strategies, one of which is a commitment to the area representative model.
01.05.2018

Code Ninjas Predicting Rapid Growth

Code Ninjas, a new franchise dedicated to teaching kids software coding, announced a major milestone with 100 franchise agreements in development with 53 franchisees in 23 states. Noting that parents are “increasingly willing to pay for their children to learn while having fun,” the Texas-based children education brand is one of several brands seeing an uptick in interest in one of franchising’s hottest categories.
01.04.2018

Watching Old Habits Come Back to the Fore

I first became a business reporter in 2005, and it's disconcerting seeing some of the same worrying trends both in the auto realm and also within the greater business community.
12.29.2017

Church’s Chicken Sells 70 Restaurants to New Operator

Continuing a national trend of franchisors offloading corporate-run restaurants, Church’s Chicken announced the sale of 70 restaurants to a new franchise operator with a goal of helping the company accelerate its reimaging program and expanding local influence in two of the brand’s most important markets.
12.29.2017

Top 10 FT Stories of 2017

From Jimmy John to Antonio Swad, we dove into our Google Analytics to compile this year’s most-read stories on FranchiseTimes.com. As always, there were a few surprises, but 2017 was the year of the mega-deal as highlighted by our web traffic.
12.22.2017

Dwyer Group Home-focused Brands on the Rise

There’s no better time to say “Look how good I’m doing!” than late December, and Dwyer Group is happy to announce that its 19 brands produced record growth during 2017 as many categories outside restaurants and retail ride the wave of widespread economic growth.
12.21.2017

High AUVs Help Broken Yolk Café Attract ‘Zees

Valerie McCartney is the VP of franchise development for Broken Yolk Café, which in recent years has expanded beyond its home state of California to Arizona, Florida and Illinois. It’s the brand’s “wow” average unit volume that really stands out, McCartney tells Franchise Times Managing Editor Laura Michaels, because “at the end of the day, people want to make money.” Broken Yolk is also opening its first fast-casual format restaurant.
12.20.2017

Captain D’s, Qdoba Attract New Owners in Separate Deals

Captain D’s sold to Sentinel Capital and Qdoba went to Apollo Global Management this week, in separate franchise deals that come amid the usual flurry of end-of-the-year mergers and acquisitions.
12.20.2017

DMK Burger Bar Sets Sights on Nationwide Expansion

Franchise expert David Grossman joined with DMK Burger Bar co-founders David Morton and Michael Kornick to launch a franchise expansion plan for the Chicago-based premium burger concept. He talks with Franchise Times Managing Editor Laura Michaels about scaling the brand to “bring it to small cities and neighborhoods across the country.”
12.20.2017

Welcome News in Browning Re-Do, but Don’t Relax Just Yet

“In welcome news for franchisors,” as a Gray Plant Mooty attorney put it in a franchise law alert today, last week the National Labor Relations Board decided to “expressly overrule the controversial joint employer standard espoused two years ago” in the Browning-Ferris Industries case. But anyone doing a happy dance should probably keep it brief, as Mike Gray said.
12.20.2017

Restaurant Operators Should Cater to Couch Potatoes in 2018

With the changing workforce, the ease of online shopping and the surge in streaming entertainment, there are fewer and fewer reasons to leave the house, and as market research company NPD notes, “the most popular place to eat out [in 2018] will be in the home.”
12.20.2017

Six ProCuts ‘Zees Settled With Regis, FDD Shows

Whatever happened to the remaining ProCuts franchisees—six people who owned nine stores and invested more than $3 million into them—who sued Regis Corp., the franchisor of both Supercuts and ProCuts, back in 2015, saying they were owner/operators in a dead system? They settled with the franchisor for $1.305 million in total, the Supercuts FDD shows.
12.20.2017

Subway Defends $4.99 Footlong as ‘Best Short-term Option’

The franchisor-franchisee relationship can be a contentious one—that’s not news to anyone—but the Subway system is particularly prickly right now.
12.15.2017

A&W Launches Expanded Franchising Push

After previewing its strategy in a recent Franchise Times cover story, A&W Restaurants announced an expanded, multi-faceted franchising strategy that builds on its success since being acquired from YUM! brands. The centerpiece of the campaign is an all-new franchise information website.
12.14.2017

Last Call for Dealmakers Entrants as Past Winner Strikes Again

Elie Khoury, one of FT’s Dealmakers of the Year award winners in 2017, is back at it with an acquisition of 18 Taco Bell corporate restaurants in New Orleans and other southern Louisiana cities. The news provides the perfect reason to point out that nominations for this year’s project are due by year end and can be made via the Dealmakers button on the home page.
12.14.2017

For Jersey Mike’s Manager-Turned-Owner, a Terrific Day

Yesterday, Kyanna Isaacson, age 26, opened her first Jersey Mike’s store as a majority owner, a shop she was awarded by the chain’s founder last year, right after she was named manager of the year at the chain’s annual conference. Judging by the smile on her face in the photo, she’s excited. “There’s really no words that I can explain everything,” said Isaacson when reached the day before her store opening, in Valencia, California.
12.14.2017

Ray Titus, UFG Launch Titus Center for Franchising

Seeded by a $1.5 million gift to Palm Beach Atlantic University, United Franchise Group founder and CEO Ray Titus has helped form the Titus Center for Franchising that will teach franchise-specific coursework to college students interested in pursuing a career in the franchise industry.
12.14.2017

Casual Dining in the Age of Fast Casual

John Nicolopoulos from RSM sat down with Tom Kaiser to discuss whether the restaurant industry has moved too far into fast casual when research shows many consumers wanting an experience on the side.
12.11.2017
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