I just returned from the Restaurant Finance & Development Conference, the must attend conference for restaurant industry professionals. The conference attendees spent three days networking, listening to panels focused on critical industry developments and getting macro-economic updates from keynote speakers such as Arthur Laffer (Ronald Reagan’s economic guru) and Guy Adami (daily CNBC stock market commentator).
I wrote an article on my blog (www.rogerlipton.com) on October 11, discussing the three major restaurant positions in Bill Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital portfolio that comprise a massive 41% of his $8.3 billion fund.
The companies include Restaurant Brands (QSR), Chipotle (CMG) and Starbucks (SBUX). Visit www.rogerlipton.com to view free restaurant company descriptions and other articles.
Ab Igram already had a solid resume in business consulting by the time he caught the “bug” for franchise financing. Igram currently serves as managing director of Sponsor and Specialty Finance and Head of Restaurant and Franchise at Webster Bank.
Robert Daniel followed a fairly typical path into finance with a business degree and a first job at NationsBank (now Bank of America) 25 years ago. But it was his desire to have knowledge that was more than “a mile wide and an inch deep” that set him on a course to specialize in restaurant finance.
Inspire Brands, affiliated with private equity firm Roark Capital, announced the intended purchase of Sonic Corp. (SONC), at a premium of about 18% to the market price prior to the offer. Visit www.rogerlipton.com to view free restaurant company descriptions and other articles.
The Restaurant Finance Monitor Stock INDXX continues to outperform the broader stock market indices. Through September 28, 2018 the index was up 20.6% year-to-date and 25.5% over the past 12 months. For comparison, the S&P 500 index was up approximately 8.9% and 15.6%, respectively.
Darden Restaurants (DRI) has just proved to be the exception to the recent rule among restaurant operators. They reported an excellent quarter, with blended same store sales up 3.3%, and traffic up a bit, which hardly anybody else is accomplishing. Visit www.rogerlipton.com to view free restaurant company descriptions and other articles.
Piper Jaffray analysts Nicole Miller Regan and Josh Long’s recent conference call on foodservice distribution isn’t good news for restaurant chains looking for falling food commodity costs to offset rising labor expense.
If anybody thinks it is getting any easier out there, Cracker Barrel's report yesterday should provide a dose of reality. Comp sales declined 0.4% in the fourth quarter ending July 31, but the average check increased by 3.5% (menu price increase was 2.7%), so traffic was down about 3.5%. Visit www.rogerlipton.com to view free restaurant company descriptions and other articles.
Dave & Buster's Entertainment reported their second quarter results last Thursday and the stock responded positively, up 7-8% on the slight sales "beat," the more material EPS beat, and positive company commentary regarding results of the new Virtual Reality platform. Visit www.rogerlipton.com to view free restaurant company descriptions and other articles.
In this second quarter ending June 30, 2018, the value of the Restaurant Finance Monitor Stock Index increased 14.63%, which brings the YTD performance to 14.84%, including dividends. That easily beat the S&P 500 Index which gained 2.9% during the quarter.
I don’t normally disclose our “bottom line” in terms of our position (long or short) in companies that I write about. However, Papa John’s is sufficiently liquid in terms of trading volume and adequately controversial in terms of the investment community’s dialogue. Visit www.rogerlipton.com to view free restaurant company descriptions and other articles.
Cristin O’Hara appreciates a good story. The fact that restaurant operators often have an interesting story to tell is one of the reasons that drew her into restaurant finance in the first place. O’Hara currently serves as the managing director and head of the Restaurant Group at Bank of America Merrill Lynch.
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