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Looking Forward to Las Vegas


After joining Franchise Times in December, this year’s Restaurant Finance Development Conference will be my first look at our very impressive event designed to help national restaurateurs grow their businesses.

If this is also your first time attending—or hearing about it—let me share some of the basics. It’s being held November 9-11 at the (AAA Five Diamond) Wynn Hotel, one of my favorite resorts in the city. The roster includes financial workshops, topical industry speakers and the best one-on-one networking events in the restaurant world.

It attracts a large cohort of attendees every year, with a goal of connecting growing restaurants with a network of restaurant lenders, investors and developers.

I’m particularly anxious for the economic debate between Robert Reich and Arthur Laffer. Reich is Professor of Public Policy at the University of California, and was Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration. Laffer is an economist and former member of Ronald Reagan’s Economic Policy Advisory Board.

The Tuesday luncheon keynote speaker is Beck Weathers, survivor of the 1996 Mount Everest tragedy, a truly intense story of survival against terrifying odds. His story was the inspiration for Jon Krakauer’s "Into Thin Air,” which was also made into a movie starring Josh Brolin and Jake Gyllenhaal.

In a climate where financing is more available than it’s been in years and so many restaurant concepts are looking to grow (and sell), the Restaurant Finance & Development Conference should provide great editorial fodder for me, while forging valuable connections for our attendees.

Just a few days ago, the current owner of Salsarita’s, Phil Friedman, told me this is where he made the connections that led to him purchasing the brand. Good stories and good business.

Let me know if you have any questions about the event. More information can be found at www.restfinance.com or by calling (800) 528-3296.

See you in Las Vegas!

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About This Blog

The latest news, opinions and commentary on what's happening in the franchise arena that could affect your business.

Laura MichaelsLaura Michaels is editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3210, or send story ideas to lmichaels@franchisetimes.com.
Beth EwenBeth Ewen is senior editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3212, or send story ideas to bewen@franchisetimes.com.
Nicholas UptonNicholas Upton is restaurants editor at Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3226, or send story ideas to nupton@franchisetimes.com.
Mary Jo LarsonMary Jo Larson is the publisher of Franchise Times Magazine and the Restaurant Finance Monitor.  You can find her on Twitter at




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