Congratulations to Andy Wiederhorn and FAT Brands on winning the Franchise Times Deal of the Year! 

FAT Brands raised $24 million in a new type of initial public offering called a Regulation A+, then bought three more brands- Ponderosa, Bonanza, and Hurricane Grill & Wings.
Andy Wiederhorn, CEO of FAT Brands, with Sarah Cavey, AVP of Wray Executive Search-Los Angeles office
Executive Movements

Le Duff America Appoints Lionel Ladouceur as New CEO

Subway CEO Suzanne Greco to Retire in June
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Boston Market Names Frances Allen As Chief Executive Officer
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Dunkin' Donuts U.S. Names Stephanie Meltzer-Paul Vice President, Digital and Loyalty Marketing
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Chipotle Adds Ex-Starbucks Leader as Chief Human Resources Officer
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Industry Vets Jim Mizes, Andy Howard Join Pincho Factory Board of Directors
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Kristen Hartman Promoted to Brand President of Cinnabon
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Paul Twohig Named President at MOD Pizza
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Financial Overview

The Wendy's Company Reports First Quarter 2018 Results
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Dine Brands Global, Inc. Reports First Quarter 2018 Results
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Yum! Brands Reports First-Quarter GAAP Operating Profit Growth of 14%
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McDonald's Q1 Global Comparable Sales Up 5.5%
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Dunkin' Brands Reports First Quarter 2018 Results
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Starbucks Reports Record Q2 Fiscal 2018 Results
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Restaurant Brands International Inc. Reports First Quarter 2018 Results
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Retention & Turnover - the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

by Bob Gershberg, CEO | Managing Partner, Wray Executive Search

Bob Gershberg
Lost productivity, customer dissatisfaction, reduced business, exit expenses, recruiting, interviewing, hiring, training, and orientation; the long list of turnover costs has been drilled into our heads for decades. Cost estimates of losing an employee range from 30% of annual salary for entry level to 400% for executive level positions. I often have written about and preached the value of solid employee retention programs. The truth is turnover can be good, very good in fact, for performance-driven companies. The main reason being, a workforce filled with under-performers and stale managers is far costlier than the expense associated with the recruitment and training of fresh, ambitious individuals.

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Traffic Spiraling, Franchise Relationships, and Other Industry Trends to Watch

by Kevin Stockslager, Vice President, Wray Executive Search

Kevin Stockslager
After a negative January and February for the industry with regards to same store sales, March brought some optimism to close out Q1 of 2018. The 0.8% increase in same store sales during the month was one of the best results for the restaurant industry over the past two years and helped to inflate the overall first quarter results for the industry. While traffic was down again in March (-2.1%), a trend not looking to reverse anytime soon, average check size did show continued signs of growth, up 2.8% compared to the first quarter of 2017. The positive same store sales numbers for March were much needed, helping the industry recover from a slow start to the year after a strong close to 2017.

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"Leadership is about keeping your team focused on a goal and motivate to do their best to achieve it. It is about laying the groundwork for others' success, and then standing back and letting them shine."  
Chris Hadfield
Financial Edge
Leading Restaurant Companies Successfully Integrate Technology to Accelerate Future Growth

by Daivd Ulrich, Executive Vice President | Partner, Wray Executive Search

David Ulrich
Many leading restaurant companies, such as McDonald's, Starbucks, Domino's and Panera Bread, have successfully integrated new technology tools and platforms to address current issues like labor costs, branding, and driving future growth to pull away from their competitors. The proliferation of company apps, kiosks, and other related technologies have enabled these organizations to set up a new level of growth beyond the typical same-store sales metric that most brands seek to measure their future success and opportunities.

Executive Chat with Andy Weiderhorn
President & CEO of FAT Brands, Inc.

by Rebecca Patt, SVP Development, Wray Executive Search

Rebecca Patt
This month, Rebecca chats with Andy Weiderhorn at the Franchise Times Finance and Growth Conference in Las Vegas, where he was honored as a Dealmaker of the Year!

Restaurant Same Store Display Changes Needed

by John A. Gordon, Principal and Founder of Pacific Management Consulting Group

John A. Gordon
John A. Gordon
We all know the single number in the restaurant world that tends to drive the most commotion-- career upside and aggravation, fortunes made and lost, investor excitement and confusion and both good and bad tactical solutions launched is the same store sales trend number. It is a very sensitive metric. Yet restaurant operators explanation of the moving pieces behind the number is not what it could be; restaurants have some flexibility to display explanations to avoid perception problems.

Delivery & Take-Out: 2018 and Beyond
Evaluating the Overall Brand Image and Performance from a Take-out and Delivery Perspective

by Bellwether Food Group, Inc., an organization which offers help with developing trends, research, brand positioning and strategy development.

BELLWETHER Food Group, Inc.
One of the essential questions today is the role of the take-out and delivery business, specifically in casual dining, polished casual, and fast casual. It's the one remaining growth opportunity as many legacy dining brands fight for relevance and survival. The overall restaurant landscape in the US is not growing - it is almost impossible for most brands to significantly change their footprint by building new units. The question is: where can growth come from?