Incremental Traffic: It’s What’s for Dinner

Dinner and late-night visits at restaurants have recovered nicely in tandem with consumers’ finances since the deepest lows of the Great Recession, and several emerging trends could propel operators past merely regaining lost business and help them start taking market share. In Technomic’s latest Dinner & Late-Night Consumer Trend Report, 64% of consumers reported that […]

Fast Casual Year in Review: More of the Same (But That’s a Good Thing)

The start of 2015 is a mere two weeks away, so it’s time again to look back at the year that was in fast casual. What was the overall theme for the segment in 2014? “More of the same”—which, in fast casual’s case, means sales and unit growth, so that’s a good thing. In Q3 […]

Fast-Casual Restaurants, Don’t Neglect Gen X

As consumers, we Gen Xers get no respect. Everyone wants to know about Millennials and whether they will remain adventuresome and frequent restaurant users as they get older (yes, we think so). And many people want to know about Baby Boomers, that giant generation that won’t give up its influence or its youth. But we […]

Bakery and Coffee Cafés: Price vs. Value

The growth of bakery and coffee cafés easily outpaces that of the overall restaurant industry. Indeed, 53% of 18- to 34-year-olds surveyed for our latest Bakery & Coffee Cafe Consumer Trend Report visit bakery cafés at least weekly, and 64% of the same age group visit coffee cafés as often. Still, in an uncertain economy, price […]

For Beer, a “Perfect Storm” Benefits Some Brands, Threatens Others, Finds Technomic

Momentum among smaller brands and categories and higher price tiers continues Changing consumer taste preferences, varied levels of cost-consciousness and competition from spirits and wine are converging to re-shape the beer industry and its growth opportunities in 2014 and beyond. “It’s really a perfect storm scenario that’s creating opportunities for some beer marketers and headaches […]

Burger King’s Profitable Franchise Model

Burger King reported another strong quarter with double digit growth in EBITDA and net income, which grew 12.1% and 19.4% respectively in Q2-14 on a year-over-year basis. Reducing its base of company-owned stores to 52 units, from 1,295 in 2011, the company’s 100% franchise model has proven successful and maximized shareholder value. Refranchising benefited the […]

Mid-2014 Update: Glass Half-Full?

Following the abysmal winter, many adult beverage industry pros were looking forward to sales rising along with the mercury. We at Technomic do see improved performance as we move into late summer, but not the acceleration the industry hoped for earlier in the year. Crunching the numbers on the recently closed second quarter revealed that […]

Investors Hungry for U.K. Chain Restaurants

The recent sale of PizzaExpress to Chinese firm Hony Capital is just one of several recent deals illustrating investors’ appetite for growing U.K. restaurant and pub brands. Private-equity firm Hony’s £900 million acquisition of PizzaExpress from Cinven, owner of the group that operates Zizzi Italian restaurants, was announced earlier this month. The deal, which the […]

Coffee Cafés Perk Up in Canada

Coffee café chains that appear in the Top 200 Canadian Chain Restaurant Report registered a 5.6% sales increase and a 4.5% unit increase in 2013. The segment’s sales and unit performance exceeded the total Top 200 chains’ growth rates by 1.4% and 1.7%, respectively. Despite Tim Hortons being the largest coffee café player in Canada, […]

Four Facts on Fast Casual for the Fourth

Ahead of one of my favorite holidays (who doesn’t love a holiday for which the staple foods are burgers and barbecue?), let’s pause for a look at some interesting facts about the still-fast-growing fast-casual restaurant segment—truly an American success story in its own right. Fast casual accounted for 15% of the $231-billion limited-service restaurant segment in […]