The Daily Rail: Is Puzder in a Freefall?

Thursday, March 23, 2017


Today's Specials: 


GUESTS: Does Your Cell Coverage Suck at Your Restaurant?

Like it or not, cell phones in restaurants are here to stay. Guests will make dining decisions based on a restaurant's cell & 4G coverage, and will even leave poor reviews when they can't get service. Don’t get a poor review over something so silly.


MARKETING: How Reaction Videos Can Be Your Secret Weapon

There's a little unknown gem in bar marketing, and that's fan reaction videos. Here's how capturing the excitement of the big moment on video can boost your social media marketing efforts.



The ‘Stache Guard

Don’t you hate it when you’re drinking a good beer but get the foam all over your glorious mustache? Fear no longer! The “Whisker Dam” is here to save the day!


The Sweet Sixteen in VR

Turner Sports/CBS are offering the rest of March Madness in virtual reality. A March Madness Live VR app is available in the Oculus store. Fans can watch the game “courtside” for $2.99/game or $7.99 for all six games available.


Who Bartends for the Bartenders?

In the UK, there’s a secret bar for bartenders. It’s called The Seven Oaks and is open when bartenders aren’t working – from midnight to 8am. We salute you, bartenders for the bartenders.



Why it matters to you: what does Puzder’s withdrawal say about our industry?

Less than a month after Andy Puzder’s withdrawal for consideration as Secretary of Labor, he has recently also resigned as CEO of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s parent company. Reminder: Puzder was Trump’s pick to run the federal agency tasked with protecting American worker’s rights – which sparked controversy regarding his CKE Restaurants. According to the New York Times, Puzder offered no explanation on why he was stepping down.

With the recent difficulties that Puzder has faced in the past few months, it is clear that a few reasons could possibly stem from the debate over his leadership reputation. It is no secret that CKE Restaurants isn’t paving the way for change in the industry. Trump’s second choice for Labor Secretary –former U.S Attorney Alexander Acosta started his confirmation hearing yesterday.



Why it matters to you: You can learn a lot from rock-star CEO Paul Brown.

If you read Restaurant Business, then you already know Paul Brown, CEO of Arby’s was named the 2017 Restaurant Leader of the Year. And boy, does he deserve that title. Since 2012, system sales rose 20 percent to a record $3.6 billion! Arby’s average unit volume has also increased over 25 percent.

Arby’s has clearly turned things around, clearly thanks to great leadership from Brown. In the past few years, Arby’s has turned to a winning formula of combining food innovation like the venison burger as well as a creative social media campaign that we’ve previously covered. The big take home here? Understanding your market segment and catering to it.



Why it matters to you: The celebrity chefs reveals the single most damaging issue that causes him to give up on an operation

When you are a celebrity chef like Tom Colicchio, opening a restaurant comes with a powerful recognition advantage. People anticipate your restaurant, and you even had landlords giving you deals to get you into their buildings. That’s why it’s so interesting to hear Colicchio’s answer to why he is closing two of his Manhattan locations. According to him, “I’m closing because leases are up and I can’t see spending $60,000 a month on rent. From that standpoint, in Manhattan, I think we’re not going to see young chefs [opening restaurants].”

We have heard this sentiment many times from other NYC chefs, and it’s true all around the industry. Since 2008, rents have been rising again for commercial tenants, and it’s a real problem for restaurant operators. It’s not just in big urban centers like Manhattan or San Francisco, but all across the US as the real estate market has recovered. The rule of thumb has always been not to dedicate more than 10% of your income to rent. So at $60k per month rent, Colicchio would need to be doing $600k ($7.2MM annually) to justify his occupancy costs. If you are below that 10% value, good on you. If you aren’t, you should consider either moving or renegotiating. Either way, the numbers need to make sense.

Hero Image Courtesy of The Washington Post