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Shake Shack Appoints Katherine Fogertey as Chief Financial Officer
Shake Shack announced that Katherine Fogertey has been appointed to serve as the Company’s Chief Financial Officer, effective June 14, 2021. Katie joins Shake Shack’s executive leadership team and will be responsible for leading financial operations across the Company, including accounting and control, financial planning and analysis, operations finance, investor relations and external reporting.
Katie brings to Shake Shack more than 15 years of financial and investment experience, including equity and derivatives research, financial modeling and forecasting, and a deep understanding and focus on the restaurant industry.
Randy Garutti, CEO of Shake Shack, stated, "I am excited to welcome Katie to the Shake Shack leadership team as...
QDOBA Mexican Eats Appoints Jim Sullivan to Chief Development Officer
QDOBA announced the appointment of Jim Sullivan, a seasoned restaurant industry executive with more than 25 years of experience in real estate, franchise development, and site acquisition management, to chief development officer. In his new role, Sullivan will lead all restaurant development activities, including market planning, site selection, real estate negotiations, franchise sales and more to support the company's aggressive growth plan.
"Jim brings a unique perspective and strong leadership approach, backed by a proven track record of successfully accelerating franchise growth for some of the nation's leading restaurant concepts," said Keith Guilbault, CEO of QDOBA. "His expertise and years of experience in growing brands similar to...
Panera Bread Announces Plans for New Bakery-Cafe Design
Panera unveiled its next-generation Panera bakery-cafe restaurant design. Panera is redefining its modern experience to serve today's guest. This includes enhanced digital capabilities, personalized options and more drive-thru access for an increasingly off-premise world; yet, the brand is still betting on dine-in with comfortable seating around its signature fireplace and a focus on its unique craft bakery experience within a vibrant, warm and welcoming environment.
The new restaurant design builds upon Panera's innovation in digital and positions the concept to continue to thrive in off-premise channels including Delivery, Drive-Thru and Rapid Pick Up® – both in-cafe and...
Chipotle Increases Wages and Provides Path to Six Figure Compensation
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced it is increasing restaurant wages resulting in a $15 average hourly wage by the end of June. In addition to best-in-class benefits and a competitive hourly rate, Chipotle's crew members can advance to a Restaurateur, the highest General Manager position, in as little as three and a half years, with average compensation of $100,000 while leading a multi-million-dollar growing business.
The wage increases for new and existing hourly and salaried restaurant employees will be rolled out over the next few weeks and will result in hourly crew member starting wages ranging from $11-$18 per hour.
Chipotle has also introduced...
Shake Shack Announces First Quarter 2021 Financial Results
Shake Shack reported its financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2021, a period that included 13 weeks.
Randy Garutti, Chief Executive Officer of Shake Shack, stated, “Spring has ushered in a great energy around the country and in our hometown of New York City. With COVID cases stabilizing and more regions steadily loosening restrictions, we are optimistic that improving trends can continue for our industry."
Garutti continued, “In the first quarter and so far through fiscal April, the positive momentum of our financial recovery continued. Total revenue was $155.3 million in the first quarter, up...
Yum! Brands Reports First-Quarter Results
Yum! Brands reported results for the first-quarter ended March 31, 2021. Worldwide system sales excluding foreign currency translation grew 11%, with 9% same-store sales and 1% unit growth. First-quarter GAAP EPS was $1.07. First-quarter EPS excluding Special Items was also $1.07, an increase of 67% over the prior year quarter.
David Gibbs Comments
David Gibbs, CEO, said “First-quarter results reflect encouraging momentum across our business, including solid 2-year same-store sales growth and a meaningful uplift in unit development, underpinned by the focus and collaboration of our franchise partners and restaurant teams around the world. During the quarter we took important steps to further boost our digital and marketing capabilities through the acquisitions of...
Yum! Brands Announces Approved Science-Based Targets to Address Climate Change
Yum! Brands, parent company of KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell and The Habit Burger Grill restaurants, announced it will decrease its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 46% by 2030 in partnership with its franchisees, suppliers and producers as part of its broader strategy to address climate change. Additionally, Yum! pledged to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The science-based targets (SBTs) are consistent with reductions required to keep warming to 1.5ºC and have been approved by the Science Based Targets initiative.
“Climate change is one of the top priorities of our Recipe for Good strategy, and we’re investing significantly in sustainable growth to address this issue by working closely with our brands, franchisees and suppliers,” said David Gibbs, Yum! Brands CEO. “We believe in the collective power of Yum! and...
Chipotle Announces First Quarter 2021 Results
Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. reported financial results for its first quarter ended March 31, 2021.
First quarter highlights, year over year:
Smashburger Calls to End the Chicken Wars with Launch of Peace Offering Promotion
Smashburger invites guests to test their spicy-food threshold with the announcement of the brand's newest premium menu creation, the Scorchin' Hot Crispy Chicken Sandwich. Made with Nashville hot crispy chicken, spicy red pepper mayo, pickles, and served on a classic toasted bun, the hot new menu item is available at Smashburger locations nationwide starting today through June 15, 2021.
In the spirit of the competitive pressure for chicken sandwich dominance among many quick service restaurant brands, Smashburger is calling an end to the famous chicken wars inviting restaurant chains to...
U.S. Restaurant Chain Customer Transactions Begin to Recover
In mid-March 2020, U.S. governing authorities, to get the COVID-19 global pandemic under control, restricted on-premises dining at roughly 70% of all U.S. restaurants, a historical defining moment for the industry. By the last week of March 2020, customer transactions at major restaurant chains had fallen by -43% compared to year ago and by -77% at full service chains, which were most impacted by the dine-in restrictions.
In March 2021, with the lifting of restrictions and more consumers vaccinated, customer transactions at major restaurant chains were up +32% compared to the steep declines year ago, although still down -6% compared to two years ago, March 2019. Major chain transactions at full service restaurants were up...
Chipotle Releases 2020 Sustainability Report, Achieves 50% Waste Diversion Goal
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced the publication of its 2020 Sustainability Report. The report covers Chipotle's impact, progress and goals across a variety of areas that play a critical role in its mission to Cultivate a Better World.
Chipotle achieved a 51% waste diversion rate through recycling, composting, and waste-to-energy programs, reaching a key goal outlined in its 2018 Sustainability Report. The company continues to expand its innovative methods of diverting waste, including its Glove to Bags program, an initiative that transforms...
US Foodservice: Expect an Even Bigger Lift From the Third Stimulus
Checks under the USD 1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, the third and largest stimulus package since the pandemic outbreak, began rolling out mid-March. The US government expects nearly 85% of all US residents – adults, children, seniors – to receive direct payments of up to USD 1,400 based on household income. The ongoing stimulus is substantially higher than the last two in April and December 2020, which included direct payments of USD 1,200 (plus USD 500 per child) and USD 600 (plus USD 600 per child), respectively.
Recipients Spent 10% to 15% More in Restaurants Following the Last Two Rounds of Stimulus
Credit/debit card transaction data from Earnest Research, a data analytics firm that tracks the US consumer economy through foot traffic, credit/debit card spend, retail pricing, and healthcare data, shows...
Shake Shack Announces Tara Comonte Stepping Down as President and CFO
Shake Shack Inc. (“Shake Shack” or the “Company”) (NYSE: SHAK) today announced that Tara Comonte, President and Chief Financial Officer for the last four years, will depart the Company to become CEO of a private company outside of the restaurant industry.
Comonte, who joined Shake Shack in 2017, will remain in her current role through May 7, 2021 to oversee the Company's fiscal first quarter 2021 reporting period and ensure a thorough transition of her responsibilities...
10% of All U.S. Restaurants have Closed Permanently Since the Pandemic Began
Datassential revealed that 10.2 percent of U.S. food establishments have closed permanently since the pandemic began, citing new data from the company's proprietary Firefly database released.
Of the 778,807 food establishments in operation since the onset of COVID-19, 79,438 have closed for good as of Monday, according to the report from Datassential. The figure does include restaurants that have opened during the pandemic.
That includes restaurants at all levels of service: QSR (fast-food), fast-casual, midscale, casual and fine dining as well as food trucks. Food trucks have been affected the most of any segment, with...
Chipotle Invests in Leading Autonomous Delivery Company, Nuro
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced that it has invested in Nuro, a leader in autonomous delivery, as part of their Series C funding round. Nuro uses robotics in their fleet of on-road, occupantless and autonomous vehicles to deliver everyday consumer goods. This is the first significant investment in a third-party technology company the organization has made since Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Brian Niccol took the helm in 2018.
Expanding access and convenience through Chipotle's digital ecosystem is a strategic priority for the company. Chipotle's digital business grew over 174% year over year in 2020, with about half of the digital sales coming from...
Chipotle to Accelerate Expansion into Canada
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced it will continue its expansion into Canada with a new location in Surrey, BC that is scheduled to open on March 30. The restaurant will be Chipotle's first new Canadian location since its Markham, Ontario restaurant opened its doors in October 2018.
Chipotle also has plans to unveil its first Canadian Chipotlane at a new restaurant opening in Port Coquitlam, BC this summer. Chipotlane, the brand's drive-thru digital order pickup lane, increases access and convenience by providing a speedy and seamless guest experience in under a minute.
In addition to the Surrey and Port Coquitlam locations, Chipotle plans to open six additional restaurants in British Columbia and Ontario over the next 12 months. There are currently...
U.S. Restaurant Customer Transaction Declines Steepen in February
Severe weather in many parts of the country in February hampered the softening of customer transaction declines at major U.S. restaurant chains reported in the last few months of 2020 and this January, finds The NPD Group. Major restaurant chain customer transactions declined by -13% versus year ago, compared to a -9% decline in January, according to NPD’s CREST® Performance Alerts which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for 75 quick service, fast casual, midscale, and casual dining chains representing 53% of the commercial restaurant traffic in U.S.
Record-shattering cold, snow, and rain affected a large swath of the U.S. in February. Texas, the second most populated state after California, was hit with a winter storm in mid-February that dropped significant amounts of...
Chipotle Launches New Hand-Crafted Quesadilla as Its First Customizable Digital-Only EntreeChipotle Mexican Grill announced it is introducing a new Hand-Crafted Quesadilla as a digital-only menu item on March 11. The Quesadilla marks the first customizable entrée Chipotle will add to its menu since it introduced a salad option 17 years ago.
"We're so excited to answer the call from fans and introduce one of the most highly anticipated menu items in our brand's history," said Chris Brandt, Chief Marketing Officer. "The Hand-Crafted Quesadilla brings so many new possibilities to our menu, and fans will love exploring fresh flavor combinations through...
Chipotle Announces Executive Compensation Metrics Tied to Sustainability Goals
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced that it has introduced a new Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) metric that ties executive compensation to ESG goals. The objectives, which are categorized by Food & Animals, People, and the Environment, will hold Chipotle’s executive leadership team responsible to make business decisions that cultivate a better world.
Ten percent of officers’ annual incentive bonus will be tied to the company’s progress toward achieving the company’s goals.
“We are passionate about inspiring real change in people, food, and the environment every day,” said Laurie Schalow, Chief Corporate Affairs & Food Safety Officer. “The compensation plan...
Shake Shack Announces Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2020 Financial Results
Shake Shack Inc., reported financial results for the fourth quarter and the fiscal year ended December 30, 2020, periods that included 14 and 53 weeks, respectively, as fiscal 2020 contained an additional operating week compared to fiscal 2019.
Randy Garutti, Chief Executive Officer of Shake Shack, stated, “As we close the chapter on 2020, I'm so grateful and proud of the way our Shack family has overcome the obstacles that came our way, and led the continued recovery of our business while supporting each other and our communities. With much of the country still under varying degrees of lockdown, we're pleased to report revenue in the fourth quarter of $157.5 million, with same-Shack sales improving to...
Foodservice and Retail Get Creative for an Unprecedented Valentine’s Day
While the pandemic has caused disruptions to gatherings and going out, there remains a special significance around Valentine’s Day. Consumers are committed to celebrating the holiday, even if traditional celebrations must be altered. According to the National Retail Federation, about 52% of adults plan to celebrate Valentine’s Day this year, spending a total of $21.8 billon.Nearly three-quarters of consumers celebrating the holiday this year feel it is important to do so given the current state of the pandemic. The virus is still a focus, with 74% indicating it will directly impact their plans for the holiday. About 24% of consumers plan to gift their loved one with an evening out, the lowest in...
Chipotle Announces Fourth Quarter And Full Year 2020 Results
Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. reported financial results for its fourth quarter and fiscal year ended December 31, 2020.
Fourth quarter highlights, year over year:
Chipotle Tests Carside Pickup
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced it is testing Chipotle Carside at 29 restaurants in California. For the first time, fans can get Chipotle's real food delivered right to their parked cars using the Chipotle app.
How it Works
When ordering from participating restaurants, guests can select "Carside Pickup" in the checkout section of the Chipotle app.
After the order is confirmed, the following instructions will be displayed...
Boston Market Brings the Heat to the Chicken Sandwich Wars with All-New Nashville Hot
Boston Market is heating things up this winter, with its first-ever crispy chicken sandwich. Available for a limited time, guests can fire up their taste buds with the Nashville Hot Crispy Chicken Sandwich, plus two additional Nashville Hot menu offerings, including a spicy new take on its rotisserie chicken. A new, fire-free Crispy Chicken BLT Sandwich and Crispy Chicken with White Gravy Meal, plus returning guest favorites Chicken Marsala and Roasted Garlic & Herb Chicken, are also hitting Boston Market restaurants for a limited time.
"2020 is behind us, and so are the chicken sandwich wars. We've been bringing the heat in our rotisserie ovens for more than 30 years, and our new Nashville Hot Crispy Chicken Sandwich proves that...
QDOBA Launches New Health-Conscious Menu Offerings
Ahead of the New Year, QDOBA launched new, health-conscious creations under the Vegetarian, Keto & More category of their online menu. Introduced on December 29, the new entrées are designed to provide customers with menu options that help meet guests' dietary goals and needs, such as keto, vegetarian, low-carb, gluten-free and more. The offerings include QDOBA's recently introduced Mexican Cauliflower Mash, a low-carb alternative to rice made with fresh cauliflower that's oven-roasted in-house daily.
"With many people looking to improve their personal wellness in the New Year, we wanted to offer our guests a wide range of menu options that help them...
Shake Shack Provides Fourth Quarter 2020 Business Update
Shake Shack Inc. announced preliminary unaudited results for the fiscal fourth quarter and the fiscal year ended December 30, 2020 ahead of presenting at the 23rd Annual ICR Conference.
“We are pleased to see trends in the fourth quarter 2020 continue to improve with Average Weekly Sales of $62,000 compared to $58,000 in the third quarter 2020, and $45,000 in the second quarter 2020. Also in the fourth quarter 2020, Same-Shack sales declined 17.4% compared to...
U.S. Restaurant Industry Ends 2020 Making Its Way Out of the Steep Declines Caused by Pandemic
The U.S. restaurant industry closed one of the most unpopular years in history moving its way out of the steepest declines the industry has experienced since the Great Recession, reports The NPD Group. Customer transaction declines at major restaurant chains in December were down -10% compared to same period year ago, a 27-point improvement from April, the height of the shelter-at-home and restaurant dine-in closure mandates, when transactions declined by -37% from a year ago, according to NPD’s CREST® Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for 75 quick service, fast casual, midscale, and casual dining chains representing...
Chipotle Launches Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice for New Lifestyle Bowls
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice is available at U.S. and Canadian restaurants for a limited time. Chipotle's latest plant-based option is made with freshly grilled, riced cauliflower, finished with hand-chopped cilantro, lime, and salt, and prepared fresh in-restaurant every day.
New Year, New Start
Chipotle fans can start 2021 off with a new rice option that is compliant with Keto, Whole30®, Paleo, Vegan, and Vegetarian diets. Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice has...
Muscle Maker Grill Opens the Doors to Their First Ghost Kitchen Location
Muscle Maker, Inc. the parent company of Muscle Maker Grill, Healthy Joe’s and MMG Burger Bar, a fast-casual concept known for serving “healthier for you” meals, announced the opening of its first ghost kitchen location in the Fairmount neighborhood of the city of Philadelphia. The company will open its second location in the Girard neighborhood.
Both the Fairmount and Girard locations are centrally located near a high density of both student/university eaters as well as a large pool of corporate workers who commonly order...
QDOBA Appoints Leviathan Winn as Chief Financial Officer
QDOBA announced the appointment of Leviathan Winn to Chief Financial Officer. In this role, he will help drive the QDOBA brand's continued growth.
"Leviathan's impressive track record of proven success in private equity, financial restructuring and corporate transformation will be valuable in his new role at QDOBA," said Keith Guilbault, CEO of QDOBA. "Throughout his career, Leviathan has executed a broad range of transactions including...
Boston Market Announces December Holiday Meal Offerings
Boston Market is offering countless festive meal options this December. Whether looking to bring home a pre-cooked feast, have one shipped directly to any doorstep or add a few a la carte staples to round out your holiday menu, Boston Market offers a variety of meal solutions.
"This year more than ever, the holidays should be a time to enjoy precious moments with loved ones, whether that be around a table or on a computer screen," said Boston Market President Randy Miller. "We pride ourselves on serving up hassle-free meal solutions that allow our guests more time to...
Smashburger Introduces New Pulled Pork Tailgater Burger Nationwide
Smashburger has announced its newest premium burger creation that is big enough for game day. Now through January 17, 2021, guests are invited to indulge in the Pulled Pork Tailgater Burger available at Smashburger locations nationwide along with a $2 beer special.
Featuring slow-smoked pulled pork, caramelized onions, Swiss and Certified Angus Beef® piled up on a pretzel bun with spicy mustard, the new Pulled Pork Tailgater is made to...
Chipotle Tests Smoked Brisket in Select Markets
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced it is testing Smoked Brisket at 64 restaurants throughout Cincinnati and part of Sacramento, California. Chipotle's latest protein features smoked beef brisket that is seasoned with a special spice blend, seared on the grill every day, and finished with a sauce made with Mexican peppers.
"We're thrilled to offer a new, responsibly-sourced brisket that tastes terrific and meets our industry leading Food with Integrity standards," said Chris Brandt, Chief Marketing Officer. "The richness of...
QDOBA Adds Michael A. Jackson to Its Board of Directors
QDOBA announced that seasoned finance and investment management executive Michael A. Jackson has been added to its Board of Directors.
"We're pleased to welcome Michael to our Board of Directors and are confident that his extensive knowledge and experience in the financial sector will elevate QDOBA to new heights as we head into a new fiscal year," said Keith Guilbault, CEO of QDOBA.
Jackson has over 30 years of experience in the finance industry, specifically in investment management and equity sales. Prior to joining QDOBA's Board of Directors, Jackson served as...
Chipotle to Open Its First Digital-Only Restaurant
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced its first-ever Chipotle digital-only restaurant called the Chipotle Digital Kitchen. Located just outside of the gates to the military academy in Highland Falls, NY, the restaurant will open this Saturday for pick-up and delivery only. The new prototype will allow Chipotle to enter more urban areas that wouldn't support a full-size restaurant and allows for flexibility with future locations.
Digital Kitchen Restaurant Design
The Digital Kitchen concept is focused on accelerating the digital business in non-traditional locations. It is unique because it does not include a dining room or front service line and...
Shake Shack Announces Third Quarter 2020 Financial Results
Shake Shack Inc. reported its financial results for the third quarter ended September 23, 2020, a period that included 13 weeks.
Randy Garutti, Chief Executive Officer of Shake Shack, stated, “Our business during this most recent quarter showed steady recovery, thanks to the hard work and dedication of our team, their agility in adapting new Shack protocols and models and an increasingly strong suite of digital capabilities. As a result, guests have been able to enjoy their Shack the way they want it, with a choice of convenient and safe ordering and...
Boston Market Introduces Holiday Meal Options
Boston Market is aiming to bring families together both near and far with countless affordable holiday meal options for every type of celebration, no matter how different it may look this year. Whether gathering with family in-person around the table or across the country over the internet, Boston Market has you and your loved ones covered this holiday season with complete meal solutions starting at just $10.99 per person.
"With all that has happened this past year, connecting with friends and loved ones over a delicious meal to celebrate the things that matter most has never been more important," said Boston Market President, Randy Miller. "That's why we're serving up decadent, hassle-free meals in a variety of ways that allow families to...
Panera Rolls Into the Pizza Category with Launch of Three New Flatbread Pizzas
Panera announces the launch of Flatbread Pizza – a new menu category from Panera, rolling out nationwide this week. Panera's newly-appointed Head Chef Claes Petersson has fine-tuned three new flatbread creations, featuring extra finely ground flour for delicate yet crisp crust, topped with delicious, hearty ingredients. Expertly crafted from Panera's pantry of clean ingredients, new Panera Flatbread Pizzas are available in Cheese, Margherita and Chipotle Chicken & Bacon, providing real choice and options for pizza night.
"At Panera, baking is at the core of who we are and what we're known for – we knew that we had all the elements to bring our delicious, hearty flatbreads to life," said Petersson, Panera's Chief Food & Innovation Officer. "With the launch of Flatbread Pizza, we are looking to redefine the expectation of pizza and carve out a niche for Panera in the pizza category. Our Flatbread Pizzas encompass...
Chipotle Launches Real Foodprint, Introduces Sustainability Impact Trackers for Digital Orders
Chipotle announced the debut of Real Foodprint, a sustainability impact tracker that compares average values for each of Chipotle's 53 real ingredients to their conventional counterparts against five key metrics:
Chipotle Announces Third Quarter 2020 Results
Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. reported financial results for its third quarter ended September 30, 2020.
Third quarter highlights, which incorporate the impact of COVID-19, year over year
Jeannie Cho Joins QDOBA Mexican Eats as Chief Marketing Officer
QDOBA named Jeannie Cho Chief Marketing Officer. In this role, Cho will lead QDOBA's marketing and brand strategy to unlock additional growth for the company.
"I am excited to have Jeannie – a seasoned food-industry marketing executive – as an integral member of the QDOBA team," said Keith Guilbault, CEO of QDOBA. "She brings tremendous ability to elevate our brand position and purpose to achieve top line growth through her strategic and breakthrough thinking. I am confident that Jeannie's analytical and creative approach to marketing will lead to...
QDOBA Introduces New Cholula Hot and Sweet Chicken
QDOBA announced the addition of a new, limited-time menu offering: Cholula Hot & Sweet Chicken. Made every day in its kitchens with grilled in-house chicken tossed in a flavorful blend of Cholula Original Hot Sauce and sweet honey, Cholula Hot & Sweet Chicken adds sweet heat to what is sure to become your favorite QDOBA entrée.
"At QDOBA, our brand goal is to bring flavor to people's lives, and in Cholula, we've found another brand that shares that purpose," said CEO Keith Guilbault. "We strive to bring our guests the best Mexican flavors, with entrees freshly prepared every day, and the launch of Cholula Hot & Sweet Chicken underscores that goal while...
Research and Markets: Consumer Spending in QSRs and Growing Online Food Delivery
According to Research and Markets, the U.S. foodservice market is projected to witness a CAGR of 3.7% during the forecast period, 2020-2025.
Increased digitalization of food service is among the primary factors driving the market, as consumers find it comfortable to book prior and make payments online.
Fast food restaurants focusing on organic produce and healthy food are expected to be the focus of the market in the future. In the United States, the demand for organic food is rapidly rising. However, factors, like...
Panera Bread Hires Lauren Cody as Chief of Staff and Chief Customer Officer
Panera Bread announced the appointment of Lauren Cody as Chief of Staff and Chief Customer Officer. A dynamic leader with global experience, Cody comes to the brand with more than two decades of experience in the food service industry. Cody has extensive expertise in consumer and business insights, general management and strategy creation and execution at companies within the US and globally.
“It’s an exciting time at Panera and we are very pleased to have Lauren join us as Chief of Staff and Chief Customer Officer, reporting directly to me,” said Niren Chaudhary, Panera CEO. “Panera is a brand that puts our guests first, and with Lauren driving strategy at the helm of our Customer Care division, we are excited to continue...
Boston Market Brings Back Fall Menu Items
With autumn well underway, Boston Market is bringing back seasonal items to the menu. Available for a limited time, guest favorites Chicken Marsala, Tuscan Chicken and Roasted Garlic & Herb Chicken return to Boston Market menus alongside Warm Apple Cobbler and all new Cilantro Lime Rice are now available at restaurants nationwide.
"This summer was unlike any other we've experienced in previous years, so we're getting back to what we know, love and appreciate this fall with familiar flavors that we hope can offer some much needed comfort and security", stated Randy Miller, President of Boston Market. "That is why we are so excited to be bring back...
Chipotle's Carne Asada is Back on the Menu
Chipotle Mexican Grill (NYSE: CMG) today announced it is bringing back Carne Asada to restaurants across the U.S. for a limited time. The premium steak option will also return to the menu in Canada and make its debut in France, where it will become Chipotle's first new protein introduced in the European market.
Chipotle's Carne Asada is grilled fresh in small batches, seasoned with a blend of signature spices, hand cut into tender slices, and is finished with fresh squeezed lime and hand-chopped cilantro. The protein is officially approved for the Whole30® program and is compliant with Keto and Paleo diets...
Hormel Partners with Papa Murphy's Pizza to Launch New Plant-Based Pepperoni Style Topping
Hormel Foods, the makers of Hormel® Pepperoni, America's No. 1 selling pepperoni brand* and the maker of the Happy Little Plants® products, are introducing new Happy Little Plants® pepperoni style topping at select Papa Murphy's locations across the country.
"Chefs and restaurateurs are very aware of today's dynamic food landscape and consumers' desire to add more plant-based foods to their diets, and we are very excited to bring this great-tasting, plant-based option to our partners at Papa Murphy's," said Anthony Panichelli, foodservice pizza toppings brand manager at Hormel Foods...
Industry Veteran Debbie Roberts Joins Panera As Chief Operations Officer
Panera Bread announced the appointment of Debbie Roberts as Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer effective September 8. A well-known restaurant industry leader, Roberts brings nearly 30 years of restaurant experience and will be a collaborative leader for all Panera operations and operations support functions.
“We are thrilled to welcome Debbie to Panera and looking forward to her bringing her strong record of cross-functional partnership, results-driven engagement, and especially, her focus on people as the core of operational excellence,” said Niren Chaudhary, Panera CEO. “As the brand continues to...
U.S. Restaurant Drive-Thrus are Proving Their Value During the Pandemic and Beyond
Drive-thru restaurants have always been the ultimate in convenience and speed but during the pandemic, especially during the mandated dine-in closures, they were also a lifeline for the restaurants that had them, reports The NPD Group. Drive-thru restaurant visits increased by 26% in the April, May, and June quarter and represented 42% of all restaurant visits.
In July when more restaurants were reopened, drive-thru visits still increased by 13%, the highest visit increase among the service modes of on-premises, carry-out, and delivery, according to NPD’s daily tracking of U.S. consumers’ use of restaurants and...
QDOBA Tests Mexican Cauliflower Mash
QDOBA announced that it is testing Mexican Cauliflower Mash in 23 restaurants in Indianapolis and the surrounding area. QDOBA's Mexican Cauliflower Mash is a low-carb alternative to rice, made with cauliflower oven-roasted in-house and blended with fresh cilantro, pico de gallo and sour cream. This flavorful and keto-friendly option has 6 grams of carbs per 4 oz. serving.
"More than ever, guests are seeking low-carb options—whether cooking at home or ordering from...
Panera Accelerates Digital Commerce and Off Premise Offerings
Panera is making it easier to order food through Google Search, Google Maps and Google Assistant. As more people search for and order food online, the integration with Google's platforms expands Panera's off-premise capabilities and accessibility to meet the customer where they are. Available at participating bakery-cafes across the country, guests can easily order their Panera favorites through Google for contactless Curbside Pick-Up or Delivery with the touch of a button. For a limited time, guests who order Panera through Google will receive 20% off their first Delivery or Curbside Pick-Up order of $20 or more.
The ability to order directly on Google will allow Panera to further embrace the growing trend of mobile food ordering, where guests can easily place an order directly from their local bakery-cafe. Seamlessly integrated with contactless payments including...
U.S. Restaurant Chain Transaction Declines Improve Into Single-Digits for the First Time Since March
In the week ending August 16, customer transaction declines at major restaurant chains improved into the single-digits after 21 weeks of double-digit declines, reports The NPD Group.
Customer transactions were down 9% in week ending August 16 compared to year ago, a 35-point gain from the steepest decline of 44% in week ending April 12, according to NPD’s CREST Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for...
QDOBA Promotes Eric Williams to Vice President of Franchise and License Operations
QDOBA announced the promotion of Eric Williams to vice president of franchise and license operations. In this role, Williams will directly support QDOBA franchisees in running their business and ensuring each location's overall success.
"I am proud to have Eric on my staff and look forward to many years of prosperity and growth for the QDOBA franchise and licensed businesses under his leadership," said Keith Guilbault, CEO of QDOBA. "He brings...
Postmates And Panera Partner to Bring Panera Favorites Straight to Doorsteps
Postmates and Panera are teaming up to conveniently bring freshly prepared, wholesome soups, salads and sandwiches to customers at participating Panera locations nationwide. Whether customers are craving freshly baked bread, their morning coffee and pastry or a comforting bowl of mac and cheese, Postmates and Panera have them covered with contactless delivery. To celebrate this exciting partnership, Postmates and Panera have launched the "Food Mood" promotion featuring Postmates' first ever virtual "Food Mood" ring which will determine a surprise offer.
"At Panera, our goal is to make high quality, delicious food accessible for all. We are excited to partner with Postmates to provide a new level of convenience for customers and reach...
QDOBA Enhances Menu with New Signature Eats Entrees
QDOBA announced the introduction of its new Signature Eats menu that offers its guests unique chef-crafted flavor combinations, while also increasing convenience and flexibility. Now, in addition to the ability to create your own entreé through customizable options, QDOBA makes it easy to find your flavor through its set of Signature Eats recipes.
"Our new Signature Eats entrees are perfect for both first-time visitors and loyal fans," says Karin Silk, vice president of menu & off-premises at QDOBA. "The dishes feature curated combinations of our popular and freshly-prepared flavors. They are also...
Smashburger Announces Nationwide Launch of Fan-Favorite Colorado Burger
Smashburger is bringing back a fan-favorite menu item, announcing the return of its hometown burger. Launching today, the Colorado Burger is back by popular demand and available at all Smashburger locations nationwide for a limited time. In celebration of Smashburger's 13th anniversary and the restaurant's Colorado roots, Smashburger will host a single day promotion on Thursday, August 6, offering Smash fans who purchase any double or single Colorado Burger a second one for only 13 cents at participating restaurants.
As one of Smashburger's most beloved premium burger offerings, the Colorado Burger is made with Certified Angus Beef, and is topped with...
U.S. Restaurant Chain Customer Transaction Declines Remain Relatively Flat
U.S. major restaurant chain customer transactions were down 11% in the week ending July 26 versus year ago, reports The NPD Group. This is a modest improvement from the 12% decline versus year ago in the prior week, and a continuation of the relatively flat pattern seen over the last several weeks, according to NPD’s CREST Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for 75 quick service, fast casual, midscale, and casual dining chains representing 53% of the commercial restaurant traffic in U.S.
Customer transactions at major quick service restaurant chains were down 11% in the week ending July 26 compared to a year ago and were flat from the prior week, week ending July 19. Full service restaurants improved slightly with customer transactions down...
Shake Shack Announces Second Quarter 2020 Financial Results
Shake Shack Inc. reported its financial results for the second quarter ended June 24, 2020, a period that included 13 weeks.
Randy Garutti, Chief Executive Officer of Shake Shack, stated, “Throughout this difficult time, I remain incredibly proud of our team. They've continued to show up, to support each other, our guests, our communities and our suppliers. They’ve had an unwavering commitment to excellence and hospitality in the face of an incredibly challenging operating environment. We owe them a debt of gratitude, and...
U.S. Restaurant Industry Recovery Stalls with No Improvement in Transaction Declines in Six Weeks
COVID case surges across the country and the subsequent rollbacks in re-opening plans have stalled the U.S. restaurant industry’s recovery, reports The NPD Group. Major restaurant chain customer transaction declines have been between 11% and 14% versus a year ago since the second week of June compared to the steady improvement in declines from the last week in April through the second week in June.
In the week ending July 19, major restaurant chain total customer transactions are down 12% versus year ago, compared to 14% in the prior week, according to NPD’s CREST Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for 75 quick service, fast casual, midscale, and casual dining chains representing...
Chipotle Reports Second Quarter 2020 Results
Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. reported financial results for its second quarter ended June 30, 2020.
Second quarter highlights, which incorporate the impact of COVID-19, year over year:
Chipotle Continues Accelerated Growth with 100th Chipotlane and 10,000 New Jobs
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced that it will be celebrating the opening of its 100th Chipotlane, the brand's drive-thru digital order pick-up lane, later this month. The milestone restaurant is in the greater Columbus, Ohio area, where the concept was first introduced in 2018. The new restaurant, located at 7162 Longhorn Dr. in Sunbury, Ohio, will feature the brand's open design, eco-friendly materials, and premium placement for digital pick-up shelves.
Of Chipotle's 19 new restaurants that opened during the first quarter of 2020, 11 featured a Chipotlane, giving the concept a presence in 32 states. Chipotlanes are expected to be included in more than 60% of new Chipotle restaurants. Despite stay-at-home orders in recent months, Chipotle successfully navigated the first quarter with digital sales growing more than...
U.S. Quick Service Restaurant Chains Fuel Improvement in Customer Transaction Declines
Customer transactions at major U.S. restaurant chains declined by 10% in the week ending July 5 compared to same period year ago, an improvement over last week’s decline of 14%, reports The NPD Group. All of the improvement in the week sources to major quick service restaurant chains (QSRs) where customer transaction declines improved by 4-points from the prior week’s decline of 13% versus year ago.
Full service restaurants (FSRs) continued to struggle in the week with customer transactions down 30% compared to year ago, a 5-point decline from the prior week, according to NPD’s CREST Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for...
Chipotle to Test New Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice in Select Markets
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced it will test Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice at 55 restaurants in Denver and throughout Wisconsin starting July 15. Chipotle's latest plant-based option is made with real, grilled cauliflower, seasoned with fresh-chopped cilantro, lime juice and salt, prepared fresh in-restaurant every day. As many brands look to limit menu offerings amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Chipotle is continuing to explore menu innovations that align with its Food with Integrity standards.
"To date, one out of three new menu item requests from Chipotle customers is for Cauliflower Rice," said Chris Brandt, Chief Marketing Officer. "We've answered the call from fans and created a better-for-you option that puts a delicious twist on our classic white rice recipe by using the same fresh cilantro and lime ingredients and...
Shake Shack Provides Business Update
Shake Shack Inc. provided a business update given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. With gradual sales recovery progressing and a strong balance sheet, the Company has restarted new Shack development both domestically and internationally as it looks forward to long-term growth.
“As always, and especially during this recovery period, our priority remains the safety of our team and our communities. Amidst our gradual sales recovery, we've started to open new Shacks again and are looking to the significant growth opportunity that we believe lies ahead for Shake Shack. I am so proud of the resilience of our teams in the Shacks, the innovation across our operating model and our relentless efforts to continue to...
COVID-19 Case Spikes Continue to Hinder U.S. Restaurant Recovery in Week Ending June 28
The recovery of U.S. restaurant customer transactions has stalled for the second week in a row as COVID-19 cases continue to increase in a number of states, reports The NPD Group. For the week ending June 28, total customer transactions at major U.S. restaurant chains are down 14% versus the same week a year ago.
Last week, week ending June 21, total transactions were down 13% versus year ago, according to NPD’s CREST Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for 72 quick service, fast casual, midscale, and casual dining chains.
The rise in COVID-19 case counts is causing local and state authorities to delay reopening, and in some cases, reinstating on-premise restaurant dining restrictions. In Texas, for example, restaurants may continue to...
Fast Casual Restaurant Market to Reach $209.1 Billion by 2027
According to Allied Market Research, the global fast casual restaurant market garnered $125.6 billion in 2019, and is estimated to reach $209.1 billion by 2027, registering a CAGR of 10.6% from 2021 to 2027.
Drivers, Restraints, and Opportunities:
Increase in popularity of fast casual restaurants, low entry barriers, and high profits resulting drive the growth of the global fast casual restaurant market. However, high cost compared to quick service restaurants hinders the market growth. On the other hand, early adoption of technologies and hygienic cooking environment are anticipated to offer...
After Two Months of Steady Improvements, Restaurant Recovery Hits a Bump as COVID-19 Cases Surge
Customer transactions at major U.S. restaurant chains declined by 13% in the week ending June 21 versus the same week a year ago, which is slightly softer than the 12% decline in the previous week, reports The NPD Group. This is the first time since the week ending April 12 there has not been an improvement in the year-over-year trend. COVID-19 case surges in a number of states contributed to the backtrack in decline improvements. The current period also included Father’s Day, which unlike Mother’s Day, is more of a backyard BBQ occasion than a restaurant dining event.
With new COVID-19 cases suddenly surging across multiple states, some of the states that have been reporting the highest number of new cases experienced steeper declines in major restaurant chain customer transactions in week ending June 21. Arizona, with a well-publicized surge in cases, saw a 5-point decline in...
Shake Shack Plans to Expand in China
Shake Shack Inc. and licensee Maxim’s Caterers Limited announced an expanded partnership, with plans to open a minimum of 15 Shacks in South China by 2030, including locations in Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Fuzhou and Xiamen.
Together, Shake Shack and Maxim's Caterers Limited plan to operate 55 Shacks in mainland China by 2030. Maxim’s currently operates Shake Shack locations in Shanghai and Hong Kong, with Beijing and Macau in development with goals to open later in 2020. As a well-respected and proven operator in Asia, Maxim's has more than 60 years of experience in the food, beverage and retail sectors, and its diversified operations include...
Chipotle Announces Partnership with Grubhub to Expand Delivery Footprint
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced that it is partnering with Grubhub, the nation's leading pickup and delivery marketplace with the largest network of restaurant partners, to expand its delivery footprint in the U.S. Chipotle and Grubhub have established a fully-integrated partnership to provide efficient operations and a seamless diner experience, ensuring food arrives as fresh and fast as possible. Available now, customers can order from Chipotle locations through the Grubhub app or Grubhub.com.
Digital orders from Chipotle are customized via the brand's Digital Kitchens, which are comprised of a dedicated ingredient station and operated by a special team in nearly all Chipotle locations. Chipotle deliveries also feature a tamper evident packaging seal to help ensure food is untouched during delivery. Grubhub users will also...
Spikes in COVID-19 Cases in Open States are Not Yet Impacting Restaurant Recovery
The spikes in COVID-19 cases in states that have reopened restaurant dine-in services haven’t yet impacted the continuing improvement in major restaurant chain transaction declines as more states reopen, reports The NPD Group. Arizona, California, and Florida, three states that reported an uptick in COVID-19 cases, showed several points of improvement in restaurant chain customer transaction declines at full service restaurants — the restaurant segment most affected by dine-in closures — in week ending June 14 compared to the previous week, according to...
Chipotle Expands Digital Platform with Canadian App Launch and U.S. Ordering Enhancements
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced a series of innovations to its digital platform to increase access and convenience for guests, including the introduction of the Chipotle app in Canada. Now guests in Canada can order their favorite Chipotle meals via Chipotle.ca or the Chipotle app, as well as through DoorDash and Uber Eats.
"Investing in our digital ecosystem in Canada will enhance the guest experience and position us well for future growth," said Anat Davidzon, Managing Director – Canada, Chipotle.
Chipotle is also introducing a series of enhancements to its mobile ordering capabilities including Pepper, its Concierge Bot on Facebook Messenger. Beginning June 22, customers can...
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