Profit Centers Rule: How local restaurants are making money off their name and branded products

My mantra over the years has always been: Successful restaurant companies have multiple profit centers. The most common profit centers include private dining, catering, off-premise sales, unique bar programs and the in-store sale of branded items, like mugs or T-shirts. But an often overlooked one is packaging and selling your most popular food items (be […]

Expanding Your Brand

With restaurant profits tight, one tactic that is relevant to continued business success is leveraging and expanding a restaurant’s trade name and reputation. I call it “brand extension” as it seems to work for small chains and local companies, as well as major restaurant companies. There are various forms of brand extension. The most common […]

Fixing Key Financial Issues in the Restaurant Industry

Last month I addressed specific financial fixes for casual dining. This month, I’ll dig deeper into three areas of concern: dealing with problem stores, leases and senior debt. There are always underperforming stores, both franchised or non-franchised. Sometimes, franchisors won’t deal with bad stores until the franchisee is on the steps of bankruptcy court. And […]