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Accelerate The Restaurant Tech Podcast Profile

Accelerate The Restaurant Tech Podcast

English, Finance, 1 season, 132 episodes, 3 days, 11 hours, 20 minutes
About
The restaurant business is changing, and the models in which you operate your business have changed forever! Technology has shifted. takeout, delivery, and catering are now table stakes and a new consumer has emerged. In this podcast, we will be breaking down the massive opportunity that is now available to restaurant operators that are willing to ACCELERATE their business. Hosted by industry veterans that break down news, insights and explore the future with some of the top minds in the restaurant business.
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Building a Tech Brand

🫶 Subscribe NOW - Unlock a world of knowledge, innovation, and growth from the largest podcast network in food service! - https://www.savor.fm/The restaurant industry is undergoing a technological transformation, driven by the pandemic, changing consumer expectations, and digital advancements. While many brands have adopted digital loyalty programs and self-service kiosks, the industry is still exploring more advanced technologies like AI and automation. These innovations are being applied to back-of-house operations and customer-facing roles, with the potential to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and enhance personalization. However, challenges remain in implementation and balancing technology with the human element of hospitality. As the industry evolves, restaurants must strategically adopt new technologies to enhance the dining experience and improve operations while addressing concerns about data privacy and maintaining the essence of hospitality.RestaurantTech #DigitalDining #AIinHospitality #FoodTechRevolution #SmartRestaurants #FutureOfDining📈 Learn More ~  Restaurant Power Index featuring the top 50 brands' performance in consumer sentiment based on 12 performance markers in food, service, and overall brand consumer sentiment. The RPI features historical and current sentiment analysis for key brands based on the overall market sentiment data. Subscribe for weekly reports on the top brands in the restaurant industry. https://www.savor.fm/restaurant-power-index
7/2/202447 minutes, 45 seconds
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Fast Casual Restaurants Dying?

🫶 Subscribe NOW - Unlock a world of knowledge, innovation, and growth from the largest podcast network in food service! - https://www.savor.fm/Over the past decade, the explosion of fast-casual restaurants has led to an oversaturated market. With thousands of brands competing for the same customer base, many need help differentiating themselves. This intense competition results in market cannibalization, where similar brands eat into each other’s market share, making it difficult for any single entity to thrive. This is highlighted by the failures of many high-profile brands in recent years. Barron predicts this is just the beginning.fastcasual #genz #genalpha #restaurantbusiness📈 Learn More ~  Restaurant Power Index featuring the top 50 brands' performance in consumer sentiment based on 12 performance markers in food, service, and overall brand consumer sentiment. The RPI features historical and current sentiment analysis for key brands based on the overall market sentiment data. Subscribe for weekly reports on the top brands in the restaurant industry. https://www.savor.fm/restaurant-power-index
6/25/202454 minutes, 33 seconds
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Reputation Means Everything

🫶 Subscribe NOW - Unlock a world of knowledge, innovation, and growth from the largest podcast network in food service! - https://www.savor.fm/Reputation management has become crucial for restaurants in the digital age, with online reviews significantly impacting success. Shereen Qumsieh, CEO of Akira, emphasizes leveraging AI and data analytics to gain deeper insights from customer feedback, enabling restaurants to identify trends, address issues quickly, and drive innovation. The future of reputation management involves conversational AI interfaces for instant insights, turning customer feedback into a valuable data asset that can improve operations and guest experiences.AIRepManagement #RestaurantTech #CustomerInsights📈 Learn More ~  Restaurant Power Index featuring the top 50 brands' performance in consumer sentiment based on 12 performance markers in food, service, and overall brand consumer sentiment. The RPI features historical and current sentiment analysis for key brands based on the overall market sentiment data. Subscribe for weekly reports on the top brands in the restaurant industry. https://www.savor.fm/restaurant-power-index
6/20/20241 hour, 56 seconds
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The Catering Boom Is Set To Save Restaurants

🫶 Subscribe NOW - Unlock a world of knowledge, innovation, and growth from the largest podcast network in food service! - https://www.savor.fm/ The restaurant industry faces double-digit sales declines, and consumer loyalty has fallen to its lowest point in over a decade. There are a few strategies that may be the savior of the industry in what could become a dark time; staying ahead of the curve is crucial. The Restaurant Mastermind Podcast brings together some of the brightest minds in culture, technology, marketing, and catering to tackle the pressing issues facing today's restaurants. With declining sales and the challenges posed by third-party delivery services, this podcast is a must-listen for anyone invested in the future of the food service industry.#restauranttechnology #restaurantbusiness #cateringbusiness 📈 Learn More ~  Restaurant Power Index featuring the top 50 brands' performance in consumer sentiment based on 12 performance markers in food, service, and overall brand consumer sentiment. The RPI features historical and current sentiment analysis for key brands based on the overall market sentiment data. Subscribe for weekly reports on the top brands in the restaurant industry. https://www.savor.fm/restaurant-power-index
6/12/202453 minutes, 28 seconds
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Five Ways AI Will Improve Your Business!

🫶 Subscribe NOW - Unlock a world of knowledge, innovation, and growth from the largest podcast network in foodservice! - https://www.savor.fm/In this Episode of the Mastermind Podcast, Paul Barron, Paul Molinari, and Michael Beck look at actionable ways AI could improve your business. They dive into labor, HR, Marketing, Prediction Analysis, and media and influencer impact—this is a do n't-miss episode!AI #Restaurants #TechTransformation #DataDriven #FutureOfDining📈 Learn More ~ https://www.savor.fm/restaurant-power-indexRestaurant Power Index featuring the top 50 brands' performance in consumer sentiment based on 12 performance markers in food, service, and overall brand consumer sentiment. The RPI features historical and current sentiment analysis for key brands based on the overall market sentiment data. Subscribe for weekly reports on the top brands in the restaurant industry.
6/3/202453 minutes, 52 seconds
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Three Secrets To Building a Restaurant Startup

🫶 Subscribe NOW - Unlock a world of knowledge, innovation, and growth from the largest podcast network in foodservice! - https://www.savor.fm/In this podcast, our three Masterminds discuss how launching a successful restaurant involves more than good food. It requires building a solid internal culture, creating a unique market identity, and embracing advanced marketing tactics. By focusing on these areas, aspiring restaurateurs can increase their chances of developing a thriving business that resonates with today’s consumers. The insights from The Restaurant Masterminds Podcast provide a valuable framework for anyone looking to make their mark in the competitive restaurant industry.restaurant #fastcasual #restaurantbusiness #startup📈 Learn More ~ https://www.revernetworks.com/restaurant-power-indexRestaurant Power Index featuring the top 50 brands' performance in consumer sentiment based on 12 performance markers in food, service, and overall brand consumer sentiment. The RPI features historical and current sentiment analysis for key brands based on the overall market sentiment data. Subscribe for weekly reports on the top brands in the restaurant industry.
5/29/202442 minutes, 53 seconds
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Reputation Management in a Crisis

🫶 Subscribe NOW - Unlock a world of knowledge, innovation, and growth from the largest podcast network in foodservice! - https://www.savor.fm/In the latest episode of the Restaurant Masterminds Podcast, experts Rudy Miick, Paul Molinary, Stacey Kane, and Paul Barron dive into the practical application of solutions for brands facing a major PR crisis. The discussion revolves around the recent legal challenges faced by Fat Brands, a growing restaurant brand group now tasked with maintaining its reputation for quality amid formidable challenges.#reputation #restaurant #restaurantbusiness #fastcasual #fatbrands📈 Learn More ~ https://www.revernetworks.com/restaur... Restaurant Power Index featuring the top 50 brands' performance in consumer sentiment based on 12 performance markers in food, service, and overall brand consumer sentiment. The RPI features historical and current sentiment analysis for key brands based on the overall market sentiment data. Subscribe for weekly reports on the top brands in the restaurant industry.
5/22/202447 minutes, 36 seconds
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Tech Preview: The National Restaurant Show 2024

The 2024 National Restaurant Association Show, considered the Super Bowl of foodservice events, is set to take place in Chicago from May 18-21. Now in its 103rd year, this comprehensive industry event brings together operators, suppliers, associations, education providers, media, and more from the global restaurant and foodservice industry. Highlights include the Technology Pavilion and Innovation Theater featuring industry-leading sponsors, exhibitors, and thought leaders sharing insights on front and back-of-house tech, supply chain, labor, loyalty programs, and other operational topics. Additionally, the inaugural 'Expo + Education' sessions will offer best practices across various industry segments. With over 400 tech exhibitors showcasing POS systems, signage, robotics, IoT, AI (including the next iteration of voice AI), and more, the National Restaurant Show promises to be a vital destination for operators seeking new technologies to enhance their operations.
5/6/202433 minutes, 19 seconds
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Game-Changing Tech: Transforming Senior Living for the Better

As seniors increasingly use technology in their daily lives, innovative solutions are emerging to cater to their unique needs across different industries. Terence Ronson, Founder of Pertlink, has leveraged his hospitality expertise to develop technologies for senior living residences, such as voice control for simple tasks and dietary tracking systems in hospitals. While integrating such personalized technologies into the hospitality and restaurant industries with shorter patron stays poses challenges, there is growing potential for these sectors to learn from senior-focused innovations. The intersection of advanced technologies and the specific requirements of the aging population presents opportunities for enhancing experiences and accommodating varying abilities across senior living, healthcare, hospitality, and dining environments.
4/22/202440 minutes, 57 seconds
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TechFocus: Innovation in Self-Service & Kiosks

Across almost every industry, self-service is being implemented in some format. Grocery stores have self-checkout, hotels have self-check-in/out, and of course the foodservice industry has embraced kiosk ordering. Joining in an Accelerate Spotlight conversation this week with Rob Grimes is Tyler Wells, ISV & Strategic Accounts Partner Manager, Americas at MicroTouch. MicroTouch is a global leader in capacitive touch solutions and innovator in touch technology, with more than 50 million touchscreen installations in 80 countries worldwide. With a 10-year technical background himself, Tyler is an ideal conversation guest as a thought-leader on the future of self-service and touchscreens in the retail, hospitality, and foodservice industries. The episode begins by defining self-service, what is a kiosk and where they are found in all sorts of operations. Tyler says that self-service is relying on the customer to make their experience quicker and more convenient. Kiosks are free-standing interfaces placed in public areas to engage with customers and display information. Rob adds that he believes COVID turned around the attitude towards kiosks in the restaurant industry. When it comes to the adoption of self-service or kiosks within the retail, hospitality, and foodservice industries there is variation. Retail’s self-service technologies focused on inventory management efficiency and being able to track better what’s being sold and what’s in the store. In hospitality, the use of kiosks is enhanced efficiency and convenience in the customer experience. Orders are put in directly by the customer reducing human error, while providing better communications through language translation, graphics and ai-generated response and suggestions. The evolution of customer interaction is paving the way for self-service and kiosks to play a significant role in the foodservice industry and beyond. Tune in to this special edition of Accelerate Spotlight to discover the reasons behind the staying power of self-service and kiosks, and how they are adapting to incorporate robotics, AI, and automation technologies.This episode is sponsored by MicroTouchImprove the speed and ease of transactions. Whatever your business or application, MicroTouch projected capacitive screens offer seamless convenience for employees and customers alike.
4/15/202441 minutes, 52 seconds
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Empowering CSR in Hospitality Tech Through Ed

Hong Kong has always been ground zero when it came to hospitality, tech, innovation and education.  How this came to be, and was put to practical use was the subject of conversation with this week’s guest, Richard Hatter. Richard has an extensive background in the hospitality space, opening many hotels in the Asia-Pacific market over the last 25 years. Richard’s operations expertise led him to become an adjunct professor at Hong Kong Polytechnic University which opened up new doors, putting his hotel background, love for technology, a desire to teach, all together to enable Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives within the hospitality industry. In the competitive Asian market, innovation with technology was seen as a way to teach students. As GM of hotel ICON, Richard put a technology prototype, development and testing center working with suppliers and hoteliers, and at the same time being a teaching hub for hospitality students. First, this gave suppliers a chance to test their products and viability with real guests, providing the ability to make adjustments to ensure a successful launch. A secondary benefit of this being that the hospitality students would go on to lead the market and be familiar with the suppliers who’s products were being tested. In terms of technology, everything from robotics to sustainability in uniforms and reducing food waste was tested. Richard believes that hotels today can learn from these methods. As a center for innovation and creativity it’s very attractive to students and patrons alike. Students come for the education and hotel patrons desired more dynamic experiences during their stay. The hotels themselves could use the opportunity to update outdated systems.Tune in to this episode of Accelerate to learn more about the teaching hotels, and how education, hospitality, and innovation can become an ICONic experience.
4/10/202441 minutes, 14 seconds
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A Passion for Hospitality & Tech

One of the problems the industry has always had, what is ‘technology’ in the first place?” jokes this week’s guest, Barbara Timm-Brock, CEO of E-Track. With a mutual passion for tech and operations with the foodservice industries, but coming from different starts in the industry, Barbara joins Rob as they examine the past, present, and future from their individual viewpoints.They begin by reflecting on their work experience, Rob at Marriott and Barbara at Pillsbury. The pair note how the approach to restaurants used to only worry about the guest who was physically in the restaurant. Now, it has evolved into dealing with 3rd parties and anyone with access to the internet.In leadership, Barbara says many senior executives are trying to figure out where to prioritize when it comes to technology. She likens it to a pool with different swim lanes. It’s important to define the different lanes of technology, to adequately assess what resources to supply them with. Restaurant workers are an important stakeholder in the process too.Looking at the future, Rob asks Barbara a series of rapid-fire questions about different technologies and what the path forward looks like. One example, Electrification of businesses, Barbara says it’s a sure thing and to jump on board now. She also says to use data to understand the peaks and valleys of one’s business will be important moving forward.Tune in to this episode of Accelerate to listen to two passionate problem solvers in the restaurant and technology industry discuss best approaches, lessons learned, and why it’s important to help operators understand technology better.
3/25/202438 minutes, 33 seconds
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Hospitality Tech; State of the Union

In this episode of the Accelerate Podcast, host Rob Grimes, delves into the pulse of hospitality tech in a "Hospitality Tech: State of the Union" episode. Drawing inspiration from the recent State of the Union address, he embarks on a comprehensive exploration of the technological landscape within the hospitality industry.Join Rob, as he navigates through various industry predictions, presentations, and articles, shedding light on the latest tech trends shaping the hospitality industry. Recognizing the pivotal role of consumer and operator perspectives, we uncover how these insights shape the trajectory of industry innovations.Our journey extends beyond mere observation, as we engage extensively with suppliers, operators, and industry associations to glean invaluable insights into the industry's current state. Anticipation builds as we prepare to attend upcoming events such as MURTEC, The Bar & Restaurant Show, Pizza Expo, Multiunit Franchising Conference, and Shop Talk, where industry discourse thrives.We dive deep into industry Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), including consumer spending trends, tech budgets, and leadership evolution, providing a holistic view of industry dynamics. Explore with us as we discuss new opportunities for operators and drivers of progress, analyzing tech spending trends and the emergence of new leadership roles within companies.Furthermore, we examine supplier marketplace dynamics, uncovering new product offerings and international expansion strategies. Delve into labor market trends, noting the increasing interest in hospitality technology careers and the industry's evolving workforce landscape.Through it all, we recognize the critical role of technology in meeting consumer expectations and propelling industry growth. Join us in this conversation, culminating in an overall positive outlook on the future of technology within the dynamic realm of hospitality. Tune in to the Accelerate Podcast for a compelling exploration of Hospitality Tech's, 2024 State of the Union.
3/11/202435 minutes, 14 seconds
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Expectations of Tech Within Hospitality | TechSpectations

In this week's episode, host Rob Grimes puts the spotlight on TechSpectations, or rather, the expectations of tech within hospitality. Not about airing grievances or frustrations about technology but rather a constructive dialogue aimed at dissecting observations and insights shared with Rob by industry insiders. From investing in cutting-edge technology to grappling with execution challenges, the conversation draws from recent industry developments and personal anecdotes, the podcast presents a comprehensive view of how technology intertwines with every aspect of the hospitality experience. The emphasis is on the importance of technology that serves a purpose beyond its novelty, the discussion delves into the significance of meeting the diverse expectations within hospitality operations of consumers, employees, management, and shareholders. Whether it's about optimizing operations, enhancing guest interactions, or staying ahead of evolving consumer preferences, TechSpectations offers actionable insights and strategies to navigate the ever-changing landscape of hospitality tech. With a keen focus on bridging the gap between tech innovation and real-world application, TechSpectations sets the stage for informed discussions and actionable takeaways in the fast-paced world of hospitality tech. To hear more of Rob’s thoughts, and start your own conversation on TechSpectations, tune in to this episode of Accelerate.
3/5/202431 minutes, 19 seconds
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Hospitable Immortality & Tech

On this episode Accelerate, host Rob Grimes asks, can technology provide a solution to iconic brands and hospitality to avoid their demise allowing them to live on, not only in our hearts & minds, but in our stomach as well?Having recently visited a graveyard, Rob was able to look up names on headstones and find out a bit about their history by searching online, which prompted the idea for this episode. New technology is taking this concept even further, by providing immortality to people, places, food and experiences that are no longer with us. New technologies are allowing access to more information than ever, which in turn extends the life of the data through the infinite longevity of information. All sorts of digital information is collected and stored including the chef or entrepreneur’s communications to live on into eternity via audio and video. Recipes and cooking techniques are stored preserving a chef’s signature dishes, giving us the ability to recreate and experience food in its original flavor, texture and presentation.If you want to be an extend the life of a hospitality brand - Rob recommends focusing on the experience. By recreating the various elements of a great hospitality experience - food, service & environment - you can digitize your brand in a way you want to be remembered. Listen to this episode of Accelerate for insights on creating a long-lasting and memorable hospitality brand, food and experience by delving into the advancements in technology that are bringing the idea of immortality closer to reality.
2/27/202430 minutes, 34 seconds
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Top Trending Tech - Part 2: Influencers

Continuing the conversation around what is expected to be the top industry technology trends for 2024, Accelerate host Rob Grimes shifts his focus this week to technology influencers. Influencers, according to Rob, is more than just individual people. Rather, it’s individual focus areas that influence what happens to technology and innovation in general. But it is the Futurists that predict the future and set the path to get there. Rob breaks down influencers into two types - vertical and horizontal. Horizontal influencers are global industries that fund technology innovation - namely military, healthcare and education. Vertical influencers are the areas of technology that cut across all tech such as big data, social media, e-commerce, communications. These silos provide data and research which ultimately drives innovation.Focusing back on the Futurists, Rob discusses their larger technology predictions. Nano technology, the concept of higher power coming in the form of smaller and smaller microchips, is something which is constantly evolving. Communication technologies are helping to bridge the gap of global communications, and many predict will soon allow us to smoothly communicate with anyone across the globe. Immersive technologies such as the meta-verse of e-learning (digital classroom) are making their impact emotionally and philosophically based upon an individual’s personal and professional life - another trend which is expected to grow.If you want to hear about the innovations taking place in these industries, or want to know what the Futurists are predicting to be the top trends that will impact food and beverage technology in 2024, take a listen to this episode of Accelerate.
2/19/202433 minutes, 13 seconds
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Top Trending Tech - Part 1: Industry Cousins

Since the start of 2024, there have been many discussions about technology trends or top 10 lists published. This episode of Accelerate, host Rob Grimes is diving into some of the top trending technology for the foodservice industry. Drawing from firsthand experiences, discussions with other industry leaders, and looking at industry ‘cousins’ retail or lodging, Rob dissects these emerging trends poised to evolve the foodservice industry. Starting from within the foodservice industry, Rob highlights the expectations and limitations of a technology such as robotics. Where back of house may see more application and integration of robots, drone technology is held back with governance and regulations. From contactless ordering to cloud kitchens, and AI powered customer interactions, we are starting to understand which areas foodservice operators are placing more emphasis. The second part of the episode shifts focus to specific ‘cousin’ industries, retail and hotels. Retail is focused a lot on EV charging and supplementing labor with autonomous channels, hotels placed more focus on guest personalization and contactless technology. Contactless payments were common among both of these sectors but hotels are taking the technology a step further, making the in-room experience increasingly more contactless. Green initiatives and sustainability technology within hospitality are also very popular. Green technology isn’t just a trendy choice anymore; it's the game Tune in to this episode of Accelerate and explore the top technology trends shaping the future of the foodservice, retail, and hospitality industries and where we can learn from each other.
2/12/202432 minutes, 34 seconds
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Tech Fears and Obsolescence

Right now, the collective hospitality industry has many concerns around the future of technology, especially artificial intelligence, and robotics. The major concern is that jobs will be replaced by technology, a conversation that has been going on for years.Host Rob Grimes begins the conversation by flashing back to a time when fast food restaurants were testing remote call centers taking orders at the drive through. Immediately, there were concerns about jobs being taken in the hospitality space. Eventually, this idea went away. He also jokes about a time when school officials debated letting students use calculators in tests; this technology was adopted and helped the acceleration of math skills.Rob talks about similar fears behind the future of robotics. At the end of the day, Rob argues, there’s going to be a service involved in hospitality. The science behind hospitality is the information that we can learn. However, the art behind hospitality is the human touch or the ability to have empathy - something a computer or robot can never have (“Never” is a long time). Rob then talks about what he predicts will go obsolete in the future. Language, for example, or rather the need to learn another language could be replaced by translation technologies. Face-to-face interactions as well may be replaced by virtual communication. In both these cases, communication is still occurring just with the assistance of technology.If you want to hear about Rob’s argument on jobs being replaced by technology in the hospitality industry and what he believes may actually go obsolete - listen to this episode of Accelerate.
2/5/202428 minutes, 9 seconds
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Buy vs. Build Tech Decisions

Making the decision of buy vs. build (or “make”) technology is always going to come down to the specific business. While majority of businesses will choose to buy from technology which already exists, there are many companies (small and large) who are developing their own systems, specifically point of sale (pos) or back-office.In this episode, Rob breaks down considerations when it comes to either approach. If you’re going to make your own technology, trust the people involved where the new technology would make an impact. Rob notes that many Chefs have developed back of house systems. You should also consider whether what you are considering already exists in some form or fashion in a peripheral industry. On the flip side, it’s just as important to do your homework when choosing between existing technology and building your own, including customizations. One of the biggest challenges our industries has always faced is integrations. Making sure the technology integrates seamlessly into existing touchpoints and operations is essential, and looking 3-5 years out.Whether you're an operator looking hear about success stories in technology innovation or you want to improve your tech stack and want to consider the right approach, check out this episode of Accelerate.Visit Savor.fm for more podcasts Learn More about the Restaurant Power Index Report
1/29/202433 minutes, 33 seconds
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A Tale of Two Cities: TechTour CES 2024 and NRF 2024

Every year CES, organized by the Consumer Technology Association, takes place annually in Las Vegas each January, and is immediately followed by NRF: Retail’s Big Show in New York City the following week. While CES primarily focuses on consumers and personal technology, NRF is a business-to-business (B2B) retail-oriented event. Joining Rob to discuss and compare their experiences at CES 2024 and NRF 2024 is Armand Rabinowitz, Vice President Digital and Technology at Levy Restaurants. Both Rob and Armand have been attending both events for well over a decade. Describing why it’s important to attend, Armand notes “as there’s more and more technology required to operate any business, especially the foodservice business, it’s important to see what’s out there and cross compare what all these vendors are doing and how they can help your business.”At CES, transparent LED display technologies were a technology that Armand took note of. These transparent displays are not necessarily new to CES, but sometimes technology exists before its time. Wearables (eyewear, watches), smart ovens and nutritional measurement AI were also notable technologies at CES this year.Continuing on, the pair talk about their experience at NRF 2024. Despite its title, NRF is indeed a technology-focused show that includes far more than traditional retail. This year, autonomous stores were a big feature in many of the halls, and there was the debut of the Foodservice Innovation Zone where the IFBTA as the NRF’s Concept. To stay informed about the latest technologies made an impact at CES or NRF, or that may soon impact the foodservice and hospitality industries, tune in to this episode of Accelerate.Visit Savor.fm for more podcasts Learn More about the Restaurant Power Index Report
1/23/202441 minutes, 48 seconds
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Preview: TechMeet @ NRF24’s Foodservice Innovation Zone

Anyone who’s been to the NRF’s Retail Big Show would know it’s the one of the largest technology events in the retail space. In this episode of Accelerate, host Rob Grimes is joined by Susan Newman, Senior Vice President of Events at the NRF. As collaboration partners representing the NRF and IFBTA, they preview what’s in store for the 2024 show and how technology has connected the retail & foodservice industries.The pair start by discussing the 118-year history of the show and how it’s changed over the years from hangers and shelving to tech. The National Retail Federation is the largest retail trade association - standing up for people, policy, and ideas that help the retail industry succeed. This year, the show expects 1,000 exhibitors and over 40,000 visitors from across the globe.Rob and Susan share a pre-show look at this year’s Foodservice Innovation Zone, an area which highlights the cool technology which is changing the customer experience in retail with foodservice. “It’s becoming easier with today’s technology to integrate retail and foodservice” mentions Susan, and adding “the option to sell food is important to a retail businesses overall footprint and ability to be successful.”If you want a sneak peek about what to look forward to at NRF 2024: Retail’s Big Show and the Foodservice Innovation Zone, where the exciting future of integrating retail and foodservice comes to life - check out this episode of Accelerate.Visit Savor.fm for more podcasts Learn More about the Restaurant Power Index Report
1/8/202434 minutes, 16 seconds
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All in the Family; Tech

For some operators, the restaurant business can be a family business, passed down willingly or unwillingly to the next generation.Joining Rob today to discuss their experience in the family restaurant business is Amanda Signorelli and Nick McMillan who are co-owners of Golden Steer Steakhouse, the oldest restaurant on the Las Vegas Strip (established in 1958). In March 2019, Nick and Amanda took over the reins of the Golden Steer Steakhouse from Amanda’s father.Amanda and Nick had extensive backgrounds as technologists and not restauranteurs. So stepping in to run a high volume, iconic restaurant was not what they ever expected to be in their future. Taking their understanding of tech and applying them to their new environment, expectations, and learnings; staff acceptance is extremely important when rolling out any new operational or tech initiatives. “Old school in the front, new school in the back” is the vision that the pair keeps in mind as they make changes. Digitizing accounting for increased security and bringing in increased internal communication via slack are simple changes that don’t interrupt the way the staff works but make work more efficient.E-commerce is a big area that Nick and Amanda explored when COVID hit in 2020. The unique setting of their steakhouse, having “80% of the customer base being visitors” to Las Vegas, allowed them to create products for their out-of-state customers to be able to bring the experience of The Golden Steer Steakhouse right in their own homes. At the same time, given the large footprint of Las Vegas, delivery was never an option as they would never be able to maintain high food quality which would negatively impact the customer experience.To gain some insight into what it’s like to take over a restaurant from a family member or want to hear about the tech initiatives of a tech-savvy independent operator going into 2024 - check out this episode of Accelerate.Guests:Amanda SignorellieCommerce | Startups | Restaurants | Media | McKinseyNick McMillanChief Technology Officer | Director Product Management | SaaS | Fintech | Cybersecurity | Mission Critical Solutions
12/18/202344 minutes, 32 seconds
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TechSystem: Best-of-Breed vs. All-in-One

The choice of deciding between an All-in-One vs. Best-in-Breed systems and applications is one many operators are faced with. When you look for an All-In-One system, you have to define what this means within the total system. Otherwise, The types of systems that fall under Best-of-Breed could be a subset of a larger application with several different individual applications such payroll, pos, loyalty, scheduling, digital signage, inventory, etc. making it an All-in-One!The approach to either of these, as Accelerate host Rob Grimes always says, define your requirements in writing upfront, and think holistically.When you compare the two side by side, Best-of-Breed functions and features may offer close to 100% functionality in a certain area, where All-in-One systems may only be 95% to 98%. The question will be, is the percentage in less functionality of feature, more important to you, and are you able to give that up because of a better cost or a single supplier. Small operators especially may not want to implement multiple different systems.Many times, Best-of-Breed technologies come from outside of the hospitality industry. Accounting applications, for example, were created to assist with virtually every industry. Best-of-Breed is really the ability to have freedom of choice - being able to replace one system at a time, not all at once, and increased integrations to other applications and systems.All-in-One is also important to define. A back-of-house All-in-One system rolls up multiple applications such as inventory, scheduling, food production, POS management, time & attendance and ordering. There may be better pricing when sold as a packaged product. Another potential benefit of an All-in-One system is support from a single place.If you want to gain some insight on what type of system would be beneficial for your operation, or the benefits/drawbacks of an All-in-One vs. Best-of-Breed system or application - take a listen to this episode of Accelerate.
12/13/202335 minutes, 52 seconds
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CyberMonday Tech

As we approach a Cyber Monday which is projected to hit a new spending high this year, the conversation around technology continues to get louder. Joining Rob this week is Aramark’s Vice President Digital Innovation and creator of Emerge, Peter Czimback.Peter introduces Emerge and talks about the importance of keeping the consumers at the center of everything as you approach your technology. “At the end of the technology there’s one thing that always happens. Someone’s touching it - humans” he says.Rob and Peter discuss the notion of technology replacing labor. They argue technology is meant to enhance labor and when used correctly, should actually encourage more job opportunities. Technology frees employees to focus on the service.The conversation moves into several interesting technologies and gadgets available for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Projection devices look to be a popular gift - something somebody would purchase for someone else, and maybe not themselves. Wearable devices like glasses are still of interest but are not as advanced (yet) as someone may expect.Tune in and get the scoop on popular consumer technology and maybe ideas for your own Black Friday and Cyber Monday purchases.Guest: Peter Czimback, Vice President Digital Innovation and creator of Emerge at Aramark
11/27/202341 minutes, 37 seconds
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Technology Brings Opportunity | Self-Service Technologies

As operators, the opportunities that new technology is bringing to the hospitality industry is abundant. Since technology enables every part of an operation, it allows operators to focus on their role without becoming technologists themselves.This week, Rob discusses many of the new opportunities that are available to operators. He calls out the growth and demand of fresh food. Customers increasingly desiring access to food that is cooked and delivered efficiently. Vending, an area that allows 24 hours of operations, is old, but new trend that operators can capitalize on as a way to expand their brand.Rob also shares some of the new technologies that will allow operators to access to some of these opportunities. A critical piece is self-service technologies. Engaging people on mobile technology which they constantly carry around with them and use for purchasing is key for the future. We can also look at robotics as another pivotal technology, as it gives the potential ability to cook food on demand within unattended or limited service operations, delivering ultimate freshness.Simply put, If you want to hear about many of the new and growing opportunities in the hospitality industry and which technologies will allow you to take advantage of them, check out this episode of Accelerate.
11/21/202336 minutes, 24 seconds
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Hospitable CultureTech

In this episode, Accelerate Host Rob Grimes has an insightful conversation with Jim Knight about the hospitality industry, focusing on the intersection of culture, technology, and customer service. They examine how new technologies like online ordering and handheld devices can improve operations but also potentially hinder the guest experience and company culture if not implemented thoughtfully. Jim draws on his extensive background in hospitality training, and his roots as a rock musician and middle school teacher, to provide perspectives on maintaining high service standards and connections with guests in an increasingly tech-driven world. They explore ideas like customized tech training for different generations of staff, making devices visually familiar, and using tech to enable employees to focus more on customer relationships. Overall, a thought-provoking dialogue about adapting hospitality's people-first mentality to the digital age makes this a must-listen episode of Accelerate.
11/6/202341 minutes, 3 seconds
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TechGenerations: Bridging Gaps in Hospitality

Accelerate Host Rob Grimes provides his perspective on how technology and generational differences converge, shaping the future of the hospitality industry. In today's diverse landscape, six distinct generations both serve and are served, each bringing its unique tech prowess and preferences. Harnessing the 5 C's of change - creativity, communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and compassion - we explore how these principles drive innovation, from reimagined dress codes to groundbreaking communication tools.But with innovation comes responsibility: as patrons eagerly trade personal data for tailored services or cost savings, we delve deep into the balancing act between convenience and privacy. Join this episode of Accelerate and be part of the conversation in decoding the intricate dance of generations and technology and discover how they're redefining hospitality in the 21st century.
11/1/202334 minutes, 31 seconds
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The Inevitability of Tech

This week’s episode is about the inevitable adoption of certain technology - where resistance is futile. Mandates, whether it be from the government or operators themselves, are pushing technology in a certain direction and making it so there is almost no way to resist.Join Host Rob Grimes this week as he talks about the specific technologies that are being pushed and adopted despite the oppositions, concerns and roadblocks that may exist.Electrification is a good example of a trend that many jurisdictions are passing regulations to push forward. Rob references that going forward, new commercial kitchens in having to be electric and can no longer use gas to cook with. AI is another example of a technology and innovation that use and acceptance is inevitable for other reasons. Businesses see the ability to use AI coupled with robotics to supplement labor and save money. Historical events also cause change - COVID saw the rise of online delivery, its acceptance, and now being an expected service within all areas of hospitality and retail, because there were limited other options available during this challenging period.For better or worse, the evolution of technology we’ve witnessed throughout history is as inevitable as change itself. If you want to hear about the areas of inevitable technology and the reason for these changes, tune in to this episode of Accelerate.
10/23/202334 minutes, 23 seconds
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Cross Industry Tech Touchpoints

Over the past week, Accelerate host Rob Grimes attended 3 different industry events across 3 industries and segments - food and beverage, hospitality, and retail. Starting at CrEATe in Palm Springs, to NACS trade show in Atlanta, and then a presentation on food and beverage technology at the ‘On the Road’ series for the AHLA and IHLA in Chicago. Attending events by these various verticals in such a short timespan reminds Rob that although our approach to technology may differ, there are universal truths that all these industries share. We share similar challenges, and thus should be able to share solutions (in the form of tech). “Technology exists to bridge the gap as different industries work together in partnership, with shared operations” mentions Rob. Despite this, it’s ingrained in us to only use technologies that traditionally serve our own specific industry verticals and niches. Rob then discusses the events he attended, by sharing the specific topics of conversation which were top of mind at each industry segment. If you want to learn where the focus is for the various industry segments, and where there is major crossover potential, both in partnerships and integrated technology, check out this episode of Accelerate.
10/11/202338 minutes, 50 seconds
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34. Defining Tech

One of the most challenging things in the ‘food and beverage technology’ umbrella is the different terminology we use to define tech and the different segments within our industry. How do you define SMB vs. Enterprise? Casual vs. Full Service? What are the functions, features and applications within back-office technologies? As you seek or sell technology, understanding these definitions is key to making choices. Accelerate host Rob Grimes says emerging technology creates further complexity. “Operations Technology, Infrastructure, Food Technology, Equipment Technology, and Experiential Technology are 5 major areas to focus on when considering the future.” If you want to hear Rob’s breakdown of some of these terms within the industry and find out what questions to ask when talking about technology, tune in to this episode of Accelerate.
10/2/202335 minutes, 6 seconds
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33. FSTEC 2023; Rob’s Review | PT 2

Host Rob Grimes continues his review of FSTEC 2023 and compares notes with Tim Tang, Director of Enterprise Solutions at Hughes. Tim has also been going to FSTEC for over 10 years as a tech analyst that covers foodservice and many other related industries across retail, c-store, and hospitality where he and Rob keep running into each other.Speaking to broad observations of the industry as seen at FSTEC, Tim says “The current environment post covid - high inflation, labor challenges, new regulatory pressures and the like have really created a context where the restaurant industry needs all the help it can get - and with technology that’s the opportunity.” It’s an exciting time for the industry.Rob and Tim talk about the biggest noticeable changes for the industry from their first attendance to now. They note that while sales may be up, profitability as an industry has come down & while there are new opportunities few are taking advantage of them. They also discuss why it’s important to have your finger on the pulse of both the restaurant and hospitality industries when you’re attending these events.If you didn't attend FSTEC and want to hear insights from this year’s show or want to hear their thoughts on how to take advantage of the new tech offerings, then this episode of Accelerate is for you.
9/25/202333 minutes, 53 seconds
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32. FSTEC 2023; Rob’s Review | PT 1

Founded in 1996 in Dallas, where the conference was held this year, FSTEC was founded by Accelerate host Rob Grimes with the support of 5 suppliers at the time - PAR, NCR, Micros (Oracle) ReMACS, and IBM. Fast forward to present day, and Rob reflects on his recent attendance of the conference from September 15-17th.So what were the major subjects and themes this year? Artificial Intelligence could not be avoided, but the underlying conversations really surrounded the ability to do more with data and AI. Generation gaps was also a buzz topic, about how different demographics are using technology and being able to speak to all of them.There’s also the idea that nuanced technologies in the marketplace will eventually be able to engage cross-industry. Rob notes “I’ve gone to many shows where the coffee, pizza, beverage and equipment areas, are separate from the restaurant section, and we find technology in each. I think moving forward we’ll see more technology that will cut across the board” If you want to hear about more the macro and micro conversations that took place at FSTEC, and what the role of the technologist is moving forward, you won’t want to miss this episode of Accelerate.
9/20/202334 minutes, 35 seconds
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30. Independent Tech Thinking

New innovation across the board within the food and beverage industry often occurs within the entrepreneurial Independent and small-to-medium business (SMB) growth space. These businesses are operating with less resources, and business owners often have to make agile decisions on things they may not 100% understand, sometimes even building their own solutions.Join host Rob Grimes as he dives into his experience working with the independent operators as they consider their investment in technology. First, he expresses a common misconception around the technology environment, that what works for one restaurant or business that is similar to yours, will work for you. “No two operations are 100% alike. If you’re a pizza restaurant, you aren’t going to operate like every other one. So while it is good to know what they use and recommend, simply comparing yourself to them may not get you the solutions that work for you. Without knowing their TechStack holistically, you won’t know what other systems they’re using outside of the POS. For instance, what applications are in the back office, what do they use for payroll, time & attendance, and food costing? And then, what are they (and you) doing manually through spreadsheets that could be automated?.”If you’re considering how to upgrade, grow, and enhance your service and offerings through new technology as an independent or SMB, Rob gives his tips to lessen your risk, find what you need, be able to grow and of course provide the best ROI to your operations. Involve the entrepreneur, always think holistically, and understand the full scope of your current operations.To start the process of developing and implementing a tech strategy & roadmap for your business, listen to this episode of Accelerate.
8/28/202334 minutes, 46 seconds
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28.Deja Vu Tech

Technology, much like fashion, sometimes follows a lifecycle where trends go from hot to not, and then back to hot again. Host Rob Grimes attended RetailNow 2023 where there was a replica of the first ever cash register built by Dayton Saloon Owner James Ritty in 1879. James sold to the National Cash Register Company and the rest is history… The cash register exhibit and timeline at the show also inspired a train of thought about this cycle of technology, and why trends appear or even reappear later. QR codes and Kiosks, for example are great examples of technologies that existed in the hospitality industries prior to COVID, but only afterwards became more mainstream and accepted within operations. Why is that? Well, there are a lot of reason for this, Rob explains. “A lot of times while the technology exists, the infrastructure to introduce it does not.” He compares the U.S. market to Japan and why the latter was able to introduce handheld devices to their restaurant market right away, while the US market was 20 years later. Cost, regulations, and consumer adoption are also deterrents to adopting technology immediately. A lot of times, big events which trigger the need to adopt certain technology - 9/11 caused the desire for security and like COVID for many of the technological adoptions in the restaurant industry, with alcohol delivery and the need to be remote. Other industries also influence the consumer’s desire to have access to certain technology within the hospitality verticals. If you want to hear more about the cycle of technology, tips to stay ahead of the curve, and even where Rob predicts where AI and ChatGPT will fit within this cycle - listen to this episode of Accelerate.
8/10/202333 minutes, 39 seconds
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27. The End Zone: Tech Investing

When it comes to investing in foodservice and food related technologies, you may want to have a conversation with former NFL player Lamarr Houston who clearly has a taste for this! Lamarr joins Accelerate Host Rob Grimes to talk about how his athletic, business and entrepreneurial passions have come together to feed his inspiration and ideas that started early in his life. Lamarr started angel investing with a former teammate, Dez Bryant, and currently has a small portfolio of seven companies - all with a different focus - from alcoholic beverage vending machines to mushrooms to semiconductors. When discussing his Liquor Software business BoxxTech, Houston says what originally was a traditional snack vending machine quickly evolved into a tech business when he realized what he was looking for didn’t exist.“The consumer is there for the reason of the event and being that it's centered around that we want the customer to not be standing in a line for 45 minutes waiting for a drink” he says. They needed a quicker and more convenient way to get their beverages. But when it came to alcohol, age verification and limits on serving multiple drinks, also needed to be addressed.If you want to hear Lamarr’s thoughts and advice on food-tech investing or learn more about Houston’s entrepreneurial beginnings and even personal favorite technology - listen to this episode of Accelerate.
8/1/202332 minutes, 38 seconds
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26. Delivering Digital

The restaurant industry has traditionally been slow about adapting to the digital age.Starting with the impact of COVID in changing the way restaurants operate, the industry turned to Delivery and eCommerce, and a new focus on Delivering Digitally. This business shift, brought about the birth of the Digital Restaurant Association (“DRA”) who recently announced its partnership and alliance with the IFBTA.Host Rob Grimes, founder, and CEO of the IFBTA is joined by Joe Reinstein, Executive Director of the DRA in having a conversation that covers why Digital plays such an important and expanding role in today’s restaurant operations and why the IFBTA and DRA have come together to help restaurants thrive in the digital world.As the IFBTA connects the entire restaurant technology ecosystem and the operators within it, Joe highlights that in addition to providing digital education, products and services, one of the key objectives of the DRA is to give restaurants a voice in public policy - noting third parties are now controlling new customers in the digital space. “If you think about before the pandemic, the restaurants were doing 8% of their sales through online delivery - now they’re doing 20-50% of their revenue through online ordering.”Both organizations will kickoff the new partnership by hosting a joint Virtual Chapter Meeting and Restaurant Marketing Summit on July 25th to 27th.If you want to hear more about the opportunities and challenges to the restaurant industry brought about by the industry’s Digital Revolution, and the roles the IFBTA and DRA play in support of this - listen to this episode of Accelerate.
7/24/202334 minutes, 4 seconds
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25. TechPlanning Observations

It’s the end of Q2, and that means half the year is gone. A great time for reflection & planning for the future. Host Rob Grimes shares his own reflections and recent observations on this week’s Accelerate podcast - noting 6 months of conversations and participating in industry events has given him a perspective on what’s coming the rest of this year and beyond. Just based on physical presence at national events, “Robotics took the biggest space” mentions Rob. AI was also a central theme that took the spotlight at national and regional shows alike. While labor continues to be a main concern into the end of the year, data seems to indicate there’s some relief through leveraging the gig economy and a focus on better scheduling practices. Considering both internal and external views of how to proceed, Rob suggests competitive analysis; being constantly aware of changes to the market, and to look at your TechStack holistically by putting everything on a whiteboard and seeing how the fit (or not) together. In terms of implementing new changes, whether those be technology or operational, give yourself 6 months to identify, research, review, select and test anything major. A structured process that defines the requirements, sets a reasonable gameplan and timeline, allows you to test thoroughly, and finally plan your launch, will help to ensure success. If you want to hear Rob’s 2023 observations to-date, and his thoughts on investing to year-end and beyond, listen to this episode Accelerate.
7/13/202333 minutes, 46 seconds
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24. Giving Through Tech

Giving back to local communities has always been a key focus for hospitality and restaurant brands. This act of service can make a difference in local communities, it creates a connection between the guest and business. Joining Accelerate host Rob Grimes this week is Michelle McCarthy, Executive Director of Round It Up America an application conceived and developed by leaders in the restaurant industry, to make it easier than ever to donate through POS connected technology. Michelle previously worked with the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, and COO for American Red Cross in Los Angeles, and has been able to leverage her experiences to support our industry. Michelle gives credit to micro transactions as an easy way to get into giving back. “Even [employees] can participate because it isn't asking for them to write a big check. You know it's a small donation that goes a long way” she says, adding that this charity can be added easily as a new item to a menu at any business. Charity is also a way to build morale within a company. Employees also want to feel like they’re making an impact with their work - and adoption of these giving back campaigns by employees and guests alike is the best way to make them successful. If you want to hear about the ways that technology is changing the business of charity, and simple ways to get involved with giving back - listen to this episode of Accelerate.
7/6/202337 minutes, 41 seconds
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23. A Sci-Fi Approach to Tech

Among the oldest mediums to predict the future of technology, books theorize where we might be headed, and one genre in particular has been a consistent predictor of the future and tech - science fiction. Science fiction has always pushed the boundaries of the current science that we think we know. Scientific thought beginning with theories, moving to research, confirming facts, and in the end, many ending up as reality.Joining host Rob Grimes is W.L. Hoffman, the author of the Soulstealer War series. Coming from a law background, W.L. Hoffman eventually made a shift in his career after finding inspiration on the beach at the Jersey Shore, he followed his dreams and passion to start writing science fiction stories. He references how Jules Verne, a science fiction writer in the 1880’s, “accurately depicted a sub that had all the aspects of nuclear technology.” Combining the aspects of observation and creativity is a key component to the sci-fi genre. It’s also why many times the prediction becomes reality.Relating to the restaurant industry, W.L. Hoffman advises thinking outside of the box. Observe patterns and adapt your ideas of technology to create a better and more unique experience.If you want to explore the world of science fiction, and its impact of the present and the future, you don’t want to miss this Accelerate conversation with W.L. Hoffman.
6/27/202342 minutes, 2 seconds
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22. The Tech Wish List; Count me In!

What inspires technology? The simple answer is that people look towards technology that makes their lives easier and/or more enjoyable. If people don’t buy-in to technology, if they’re not enthusiastic about it, then it’s not going to be used – Accelerate host Rob Grimes included!On this week’s episode of Accelerate, Rob explores some of the personal technologies he’s invested in and how these technologies are shifting to accommodate his individualized preferences which also find their way into technology adoption within the hospitality industries. In many ways people are trying to simulate their preferred technology they get at home in their restaurant and hospitality experiences.For example, voice control is a technological innovation that people are using at their home or on-the-go. This is translatable to the experiences one might get when they go into the hospitality industry, where they will begin to expect universal voice integration within the technologies used by both customers and operators. If you want to learn more about the symbiotic relationship between our personal desires and technological advancements as well as Rob’s own personal inspirations, listen to this episode Accelerate.
6/22/202332 minutes, 55 seconds
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21. “Hospitality Tech’s Channel; The RSPA”

Partnerships are the backbone of any great organization and it’s with those partners that you can provide stellar service and offerings for operators of all sizes locally, regionally, and nationally. This is where the Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA) supports the Vendors of tech and their channels of Value-Added Resellers (“VAR’s”) throughout the foodservice, hospitality, and retail industries. In its 75th year, the RSPA provides leadership, training and support to it members in order to provide the best solutions to the operators who need them.On this week’s episode of Accelerate, host Rob Grimes has a conversation with Jim Roddy, CEO of the RSPA where they discuss the impact, opportunities and ways that operators can engage with RSPA members. They also discuss the newest partnership between the RSPA and IFBTA.
6/14/202338 minutes, 49 seconds
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20. Predictive Programming = Predictive Tech

Technology predictions from the 20th century are starting to take shape now in 2023. In the cartoon “The Jetson’s” (which aired in 1962) there were many artificial intelligence, automation, self-driving technologies, etc. which do exist in some form today while others are still under development. So how are people able to make such bold, yet accurate predictions with technology?This week Accelerate Host and IFBTA CEO Rob Grimes, explores predictive programming impacts technology innovation, starting out as an idea in someone’s “mind’s eye” and is influenced by other technologies, industries, ending up in Cartoons, TV and in the Movies. In comparing how robots will do the work of their masters, Rob references a popular scene from the movie ‘The Surrogate.’ “Bruce Willis sits in a chair and his surrogate goes out and does work for him, whether those are robotics or holograms”. Space exploration, robots, automated food, none of these are new ideas - but they are quickly becoming our reality in 2023.If you want to learn more about the different ways that entertainment media has influenced and predicted current and future technology innovation and trends, check out this episode of Accelerate.
6/6/202332 minutes, 1 second
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19. Hospitable Tech

The symbiotic relationship between the foodservice and hospitality industries is one that stretches back centuries. In fact, before the onset of Inn’s in the 1800’s (the first lodging facility for tourists), locals used to let travelers rest on kitchen floors and extra spaces during their journey. Food, beverage and rest (Eat, Drink and Sleep), have always gone hand in hand.In this episode of Accelerate, host and IFBTA CEO Rob Grimes, has a conversation with Mike Blake, Chief Technology Officer of the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA).Mike discusses AHLA’s role within hospitality, defining best practices and serving as a focal point for over 80% of franchised hotels which are represented. “I always used to tell people that I could troubleshoot a room whether the room is in Dubai, Kuala Lumpur or Wichita, Kansas, they all are pretty much set up very similarly when it comes to the technology,” Mike mentions, referring to the consistent global standards of the hospitality industry.Rob and Mike also announced the new partnership between the IFBTA and AHLA - discussing how each organization are experts in their respective industries, and how the partnership will enhance the AHLA’s offerings in F&B technology content, education and networking for their Hotelier and Supplier members, at the same time making available to IFBTA members the resources of America’s largest hotel association.If you want to hear more about the dynamic environment within Lodging and F&B technologies, and hear more about the new AHLA and IFBTA’s partnership, you don’t want to miss this episode of Accelerate.
5/22/202333 minutes, 27 seconds
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18. Tech Peeves

Whether in a good or bad economy, the tech within the foodservice and hospitality industries always tends to do well. Many good tech ideas have come and gone - but why is that? Join Accelerate host Rob Grimes this week as he focuses on the things that could have been, and shares his 'tech peeves' on tech that should have taken advantage of other existing technologies to be more successful."Some new industry technologies come about due to spur of the moment needs and are silos and one-off's. Due to their lack of integration into the other systems we use, they go by the wayside."If you want to join the conversation and hear more about the challenges Rob has seen in the industry over the years, and the considerations to think of going forward, then this episode of Accelerate is for you.
5/19/202335 minutes, 11 seconds
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17. Conveniently Tech

Most people think about a gas station or corner store when they think of the convenience store industry (“C-Stores”). Convenience is found everywhere, and a majority of the industry is actually owned and operated by family businesses. Joining host Rob Grimes on this episode of accelerate is Ray Huff, President of HJB Convenience Corp who has more than 40 years in convenience retail and is the Chairman of the Board of Advisors of Conexxus the technology partner of the National Association of Convenience Stores (“NACS”).“COVID forced the consumer to go look at convenience,” says Ray, noting that customers didn’t want to stand in lines or crowds, and he believes the trend is here to stay. As C-Store operations grow, technology comes into play after the independents grow to the their 3rd or 4th location.The conversation explores a history of success between foodservice, QSR restaurants and C-Stores. WAWA was one of the first to introduce quick service into a convenience environment successfully, making their stores a destination to go to just for the food - it made others pay attention.If you want to hear more about the growing partnerships, as well as the challenges of incorporating foodservice into C-Stores, as well as understanding the requirements of the tech that drives these new opportunities, then you won’t want to miss this episode of Accelerate.
5/10/202335 minutes, 39 seconds
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16. Table Talk; Tech

Host Rob Grimes shares some of the Table Talk conversations that he has been a part of a recent receptions, dinners and of course early morning coffees. While many subjects are offered on the big stage at industry conferences, much of the “meat” of the top of mind subjects facing out industry, takes place in these small group and 1-on-1 conversations. Talks about the future of the hospitality industry are notoriously known to occur at private functions - mainly dinners and receptions. To name a few, AI and ChatGPT is brought up in almost every conversation and presentation. The discussion is not just on the technology, but questions about ethics and the human factor in providing hospitality. Another key topic is disaster recovery and planning after public ransomware attacks, as well as the role of robotics in providing services and the interaction with employees and guests. Whether it’s over a coffee, drink, meal or in the hallway, the important conversations are the follow-on ones that occur off the main stage, that tell the future of tech trends within the industry. To hear more about these tech table talks, listen to this episode of Accelerate.
5/3/202336 minutes
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15. Recipe for Tech

The world of innovating high speed and accelerated cooking products is on fire. So what demands this innovation? What trends are we seeing? James Pool, CTO and Operations Officer of The Middleby Corporation, joins host Rob Grimes as they explore the tech-infused world of next-gen cooking equipment.Reflecting on the innovation coming out of over 120 equipment brands within their portfolio, James Pool notes that innovation is being driven by the desire for automation. “Supply chain and labor are the 2 biggest focus areas right now. That’s where we see the ideas for our innovations coming from. The biggest questions are how do I automate my kitchen, how do I adjust how the staff does their job, and make the equipment easier to operate?”They discuss ventless technologies, electrification of kitchens, and the shift towards robotics, while adding in a topping of digital IoT to tie it all together within the totally connected kitchen.To hear more about the fast-paced environment of kitchen equipment and the surrounding technologies that empower your kitchen, this episode of Accelerate cooks it up for you.
4/24/202340 minutes, 23 seconds
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14. Inspector Gadget: Mobile Office Technology

COVID’s impact on advancing mobile office solutions and the technologies behind it are significant. From small businesses to schools to governments, everything needed to be done from the home office, coffee shop and other alternative locations. As the nature of the work location and workforce access was changed forever, new technology, tools and gadgets became available while old standards evolved to be useful in the new digital work world. The new approach gave workers the tools to do everything found in a traditional office environment on their phones and mobile devices. Host Rob Grimes points out how people are now starting to question “what is a mobile office vs a personal computer?To explore the changes and impact on the remote worked, and to discuss the various ways that new gadgets have been applied that can impact foodservice and hospitality technology offerings, this episode of Accelerate is at the center of your plate!
4/20/202332 minutes, 55 seconds
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13. Home Schooling; Tech Teachings

Joining host Rob Grimes this week is Eddie Shapiro, a home technology integrator and expert – who is on the board of the Association – CEDIA - Custom Electronics Design and Installation Association. Eddie shares with us the trends in the luxury home marketplace that also can play a role in what is available and coming for the commercial foodservice and hospitality markets.The luxury home market has seen a shift in consumers who desire high quality technology in their home, such as intelligent lighting fixtures, audio-visual, connected bathrooms and kitchens, security and surveillance, and energy management. All these technologies come together in a Human-Centric approach, incorporating AI and requiring a deep understanding of networks, data security and integration to pull it all together. Whether bought from Home Depot, Amazon, or specialized professional grade equipment, the fusion of home and tech cannot be denied.In establishing the connection between technology and the home, Eddie says that collaboration between vendors is essential. “The integrator of the AV technology company on a project, needs to collaborate with the builder, plumber and electrician as it is available everywhere. It’s a better project for everybody when that happens.” Moving forward, powering the numerous technologies that run at home is a focal point for those who work in the space, especially ensuring the integration of clean energy to do so. Sound familiar?Listen to this episode of Accelerate to consider the learnings at home that can be applied to your operations and can be applied to your home as well!
4/12/202338 minutes, 26 seconds
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12. Hospitality TechTour; Around the World in 30-Days

Accelerate host Rob Grimes takes a look at the 6 events industry he attended just 30-days in March, and the global conversations, observations and those “ah-ha” moments he encountered during the journey.Starting and ending in Las Vegas, with pit stops in Tel Aviv and London, it’s clear that cybercrime, artificial intelligence & location-based technologies are a focal point for the community at large, and that new innovation is coming to the forefront faster than ever before.Rob reflects on how “location-based technologies are being embedded for Ai which also helps with custom culture language.” With data and digital technology, we are able to communicate more efficiently on a global scale.To hear about global trends in hospitality and foodservice technology, how they are showcased, and put into action, this Accelerate episode is for you.
4/3/202342 minutes, 37 seconds
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11. Hospitality Education’s Role in Technology, Innovation and Evolution

Today’s podcast is in memory of Dr. Pat Moreo, a leading hospitality educator - dedicated to a lifetime of service to our industry.Joining Host Rob Grimes is Dr. Cihan Cobanoglu, Dean of the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at the University of South Florida, and Dr. Donna Quadri-Felitti, Director of Penn State University’s School of Hospitality Management. Both schools are leading educational institutions and are ones where “Dr. Pat” served as a Dean, Faculty Member, and Mentor.Hospitality higher education is a niche field that has evolved tremendously as the hospitality industry has become more advanced over time. Their ability to provide teach and provide research both in-person and virtually, is an integral part of the development and innovation of technology that supports students, operators and the suppliers to the industry.Technology exists in every facet and segment of the industry from back-of-the-house to the front-of-the-house, and from reservations to guest satisfaction tracking, and reputation management. Students, as our “next generation” of industry leaders, must learn and use technology in everything they do. To learn more about the intersection between hospitality, education, and technology and how educators play a role in adapting and infusing new technology into their programs and for the industry, listen this episode of Accelerate.
3/29/202339 minutes, 51 seconds
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10. The Startup Nation; Hospitality and Tech

Joining IFBTA CEO Rob Grimes this week on Accelerate is Tomer Moore, founder of the Israeli Restaurant Association; Misadanim Chazakim Beyachad (Restauranteurs are Stronger Together). Tomer has background as a restauranteur, opening over 10 restaurants and working with Tech startups. Tomer noticed that despite Israel being a global technology powerhouse known as the “Startup Nation”, the restaurant industry used technology that was out of date, focusing mostly on POS.Since COVID, things have shifted. Tomer mentions “It was a big crisis, but it was also a great opportunity for customers and for operators to make a technology shift and investment.” Customers are open for that.” Looking to the future, emerging tech like AI, robotics, blockchain, etc. are all making its way into the Israeli restaurant scene.”To learn more about the emergence of technology in Israel and its growing restaurant, hospitality and tourism industries, this episode of Accelerate is a must!
3/21/202342 minutes, 5 seconds
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9. The Hospitable Culture of Technology

Culture is at the center of the plate when it comes to what makes us unique and differentiates us in the products and services we offer. It needs to be served with the culture and customs of our guests and employees in mine. On this week’s episode of Accelerate, Host Rob Grimes considers the many forms of traditions and how they work hand in hand with the technology and tools that can help us.The bottom line is that the hospitality industries need to provide good service no matter where they operate. To understand cultural expectations is to be able to provide that quality. Having options in menus is a good example of this - understanding the local needs and expectations of the customers you serve.Technologies like AI and Machine Learning are able to help us understand and navigate various cultures in ways we couldn’t before. Still, Rob says, we don’t know everything. “We've started talking about ethics because that also plays a part; not just how people negotiate, but how they conduct business in ways which may seem different in every culture. Ethics also plays a part in how we use the technology; ethics is impacts what we can do and use in the information we collect.”To learn more about the deep connection between technology and culture, listen to this episode of Accelerate.
3/15/202337 minutes, 53 seconds
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8. Learning to Adapt: Thinking Beyond ChatGPT; it’s not the Destination, it’s just the Beginning

New AI technologies constantly impact and offer opportunities for F&B and beyond. ChatGPT is the most recent “shiny object” garnering much of the recent media attention, conversation and debate. Education has been one of the first to call out the effect, and impact as students have the ability to get their work done by this application. While some educators have taken an optimistic approach to the new technology, others are actively resisting.Joining host Rob Grimes on this episode is Toby Egan, PhD is Associate Professor & Senior Executive Fellow and Chair of the Faculty at the Robert H. Smith School of Business and the School of Public Policy at the University of Maryland.Adaptation of technology is tough in any industry Egan notes, 3D printing for example. “Chefs would probably argue that the nuance there is going to be difficult for a machine to reproduce and I'm sure that's seen as a big challenge for the robotic industry.”How is the government regulating these new technologies? What is the answer to the age old question of is technology here to help or hurt us? How do we put a hospitality focus on this?Find out on this episode of Accelerate.
3/7/202336 minutes, 29 seconds
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Tech Trends for 2023 With Rob Grimes

The restaurant industry has relied on technology like never before. The future of what tech will do in 2023 is a massive combination of various technology adoption curves that may all be coming to a head simultaneously. This perfect storm of technology could create either a new growth spurt for the industry or cause a cataclysmic meltdown as labor tech, AI & Robotics, and customer-facing technology might be entering a new place.Forrester research shows some key elements that need to be in place. Four in five CX teams will need more critical design, data, and journey skills. Already, most CX teams lack crucial skills in inclusive experience design; design thinking; survey design; data literacy and storytelling; journey mapping, analytics, and management. These " accelerants " skills help CX teams understand, improve, and manage the customer experience.In this Episode, Paul Barron and Rob Grimes cut up what the next generation of technology might look like and where 2023 is in the overall landscape.Special Announcement - Accelerate Restaurant Technology Podcast will be getting a new network partner and host with the IFBTA and Rob Grimes; this show will kick off a new weekly segment featuring new technology, operators, and innovations that are position the restaurant business for a golden age of growth!
12/19/202239 minutes, 9 seconds
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Ghost Kitchens Go Global | JustKitchen

In this episode of Accelerate series for the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, host Paul Barron chats with Michael Liu, executive vice president of JustKitchen to dive into the ghost kitchen and virtual brand phenomenon that has been happening around the world.JustKitchen is an operator of ghost kitchens currently operating twenty restaurants in Taiwan and two restaurants in Hong Kong and they use a hub and spoke food delivery model and is currently expanding to the Philippines and Singapore.Liu says, most of the JustKitchen executives come from a food and beverage background and his background, the delivery aggregator industry. When choosing brands to partner with, Liu says, “we were able to collect a lot of data to look at what is going to be an emergent trend in terms of food delivery service, what kind of brands, what kind of food that we're serving but really just studying the data.”The process to develop a virtual brand for JustKitchen starts with a lot of data scraping, looking at restaurants and delivery and then they forecast. Liu says, “by applying some sort of algorithm to look at what kind of volume they’re doing so basically just trying to meet that demand versus actually creating one.” JustKitchen offers several brands including Smith & Wollensky and TGI Fridays.In terms of ghost kitchens Liu says, “I do think that's definitely going to be a growing trend and I think another really big issue is definitely inflation of food cost, labor shortage and that gives not a lot of options to the traditional restaurant operators to operate at what they used to do. So I think virtual brand or cloud kitchen really gives that extra edge for them to really go to the next level to increase their income to increase their average ticket size or you know even just to increase their efficiencies.”To learn more about JustKitchen’s partnership with DJ Khaled’s Another Wing, Liu’s insights on celebrity brands, and third party partner data and how to decentralize from the food delivery aggregators, listen to this episode of Accelerate.
1/5/202244 minutes, 35 seconds
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Improving Culture Within Your Operation | Jamie Griffin - Consult to Grow

In this episode of the twelve-part Accelerate series for the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, host Sam Stanovich and guest host Kathleen Wood chat with Jamie Griffin, founder and principal partner at Consult to Grow, to explore the power of culture and the talent pipeline. Griffin shares his background saying, “for twenty years I spent fifteen years on the operations side working with Raising Cane’s from the ninth restaurant to the four hundredth or so.” Adding, “And started my own consulting company which is Consult To Grow, where I work side by side with restaurant owners, founders and operators to scale and grow through people, systems and processes.”Wood asks Griffin what he thinks about culture in today’s marketplace, he says, “I really think of culture very similar to brand, so brand is to the customer as culture is to the employee and I think there are a lot of really important symbolic relationships between those two.” Griffin adds, “But for me what culture is it's the personality in the story of how we operate our business, what are our values, what is our management style, what are the beliefs that we hold about what it takes to compete and be successful.” Griffin, when asked about the talent pipeline says, “so talent pipeline is about three things, it's about attracting the right people, it’s about retaining the right people and it's about developing people to the next level.” To learn more about Consult To Grow, the power of culture, and the importance of the talent pipeline, listen to this episode of Accelerate.
11/3/202140 minutes, 31 seconds
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How Team Connection Accelerates Your Business | Jamie Leeds Restaurant Group

In this episode of the twelve-part Accelerate series for the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, host Sam Stanovich and guest host Kathleen Wood chat with Jamie Leeds, chef and restaurateur of Jamie Leeds Restaurant Group, which includes Hank’s Oyster Bar, The Wharf and Hank’s Cocktail Bar, to explore how team connection can accelerate your business. Leeds shares how she and her team navigated during the pandemic, staying connected and brainstormed ways to stay alive financially. Recognizing that restaurants were closed and suppliers were suffering, they developed a concept to engage that supply chain. Leeds talks about keeping loyal clientele and growing their customer base. She says that they are very hospitality based and attributes that to her time as a sous chef for her mentor Danny Meyer. Leeds adds that they are hospitality first, staff is key, and the importance of taking care of her own. When asked about her hiring strategy, Leeds says she has had no problems with staffing. She was able to keep most of her staff through the winter and her team came back, even relocating them at her other restaurants. Wood asks Leeds about the theme of loyalty, Leeds said it is simple, it is about connection. To learn more about why technology is important for Jamie Leeds Restaurant Group, how Leeds is making the operator’s jobs easier, and about changing out POS systems, listen to this episode of Accelerate.
10/27/202132 minutes, 57 seconds
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Brand Expansion & Growth Strategy | Atul Sood - Kitchen United

In this episode of the twelve-part Accelerate series for the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, host Sam Stanovich and guest host Kathleen Wood chat with Atul Sood, the chief business officer of Kitchen United, to explore successfully creating and implementing a growth strategy in the restaurant and hospitality industry.“We focused the business quickly on restaurants… and then we realized we needed to have a facility for onsite ordering,” says Sood. “We’ve gone from there to having six sites, and we’ll be opening another twelve to fourteen sites this year.”Founded in 2017, Kitchen United was designed to support restaurant takeout, delivery, and catering via dark kitchens. The GV-backed startup has helped countless restaurants expand their consumer base for off-premise dining.“You only staff the cooks. We take care of everything else: cleaning, sanitation, running of food to the delivery driver or customer, manning the front of house, receiving food products, managing technology, managing the co-marketing,” adds Sood. “It’s really a CapEx, time, and labor-light way to expand.”Listen to the episode to learn more about Kitchen United’s expansion plans!
8/24/202146 minutes, 22 seconds
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Takeout Delivery & Catering: Accelerate Series Kickoff

In the first episode of the new 12-part Accelerate series for the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, host Sam Stanovich and guest host Kathleen Wood explore how owners, leaders, and operators can effectively accelerate their business in a post-pandemic world to push for more success, more profits, and more opportunities to rebuild the industry.“Operators are busier than ever. There’s pent-up demand in the marketplace and a huge lack of labor,” says Stanovich. “If we’re not being strategic, and if we’re not getting ready, we can’t accelerate our business to where the most amount of profit is because we’re being reactionary versus proactive in our business.”Despite appearances, the industry is moving at a rapid pace. With the pressure of the labor shortage, the pressure of supply changes, and new competitors entering the marketplace, many formerly successful businesses will be left behind if they don’t start investing in and accelerating their business now.One group that businesses need to start investing in is Gen Z—the 72 million people born between 2000 and 2015. “These Gen Zs are digital natives. Everything about their world is technologically infused,” notes Wood. “COVID really brought their voices to the forefront. These Gen Z are becoming our customers and our workforce… and they are driving all of us to be more flexible, agile and technologically advanced.”Listen to the episode to learn more about embracing the uncertain future of the industry amidst the ongoing pandemic, and successfully implementing new, relevant technology!
8/13/202132 minutes, 54 seconds
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Beef, Gyros, and Silver Plates | Nick Vojnovic - Little Greek Fresh Grill

On the last episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Nick Vojnovic, the president of the Little Greek franchise, to explore brand building and how businesses have shifted since the onset of the pandemic.Little Greek specializes in fresh, grilled Greek cuisine. The chain prioritizes quality, handcrafted food that is as flavorful as it is affordable.“Keep your footprint as small as you can,” says Vojnovic. “We’ve not seen a correlation between store size and sales… the future will be smaller boxes, and drive-thrus will be a key element going forward.”Little Greek currently maintains 44 locations, adding four or five restaurants each year. The company dropped about 30 to 35 percent when the pandemic first hit, but was able to rebound and become even with the previous year by summer 2020. For the chain, the main priority is to offer a wide selection of authentic food.“From a marketing standpoint, I think we’re the only franchise in the country that does not collect a marketing fee,” adds Vojnovic. “We try to let our food speak for itself. We use our catering to market the brand… for the most part, it’s all been organic growth.”Listen to the episode to learn more about mentorship and cultivating a successful work culture!
8/3/20211 hour, 4 minutes, 34 seconds
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62. Be Damn Good | Elizabeth Baxter - Torchy's Tacos

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Elizabeth Baxter, the chief people officer of Torchy’s Tacos, to explore the taco business, crafting products and merchandise, and building a culture of caring.Begun in a food trailer—with some advertising conducted on a Vespa—Torchy’s Tacos specializes in high quality, cooked-to-order tacos. With over 75 locations, the chain is committed to responsible sourcing, constant menu innovation, and hiring employees that reflect and reinvest in their communities.“Every taco we serve, you’re not going to see in another kind of taco shop,” says Baxter. “Our focus has really been about the best ingredients and fun, memorable names. The Brushfire has fresh mango on it, and the fact that we source that mango and make sure that it’s ripe and cut perfectly—that’s what gets people coming back.”For Torchy’s, the goal is to make the food original and keep the customers engaged. They have a secret menu that customers can only learn about through the grapevine, and a taco of the month special to continuously surprise guests with new tacos as well as tacos from the vault to try.“Food trucks are relevant because it’s just another form. Right now, people don’t want to sit in a restaurant, so we’ve shifted to this off-premise idea,” adds Baxter. “It’s another way of people getting food in an easier, different way. And people like different, innovative, and easier.”Listen to the episode to learn more about taco trucks and best practices for recruiting!This episode is sponsored by DAWN® PROFESSIONAL - Pot and Pan
5/18/202146 minutes, 10 seconds
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61. Setting Roots for the Future! | Tom Foley & Tiffany Derry

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Tom Foley, the founder of Indigo Group, and Tiffany Derry, the chef and owner of Roots Chicken Shak, to explore packaging, catering, community, and planting roots for the future.Roots Chicken Shak is famous for its duck fat fried chicken, courtesy of celebrity chef Tiffany Derry. Options range from wings and tenders to sandwiches and salads, all freshly prepared in the chain’s limited 300 square feet of space. Indigo Group helped found Roots Chicken Shak in 2017, and the management consulting company continues to oversee the chain’s operations.“We call the front of the house the restaurant, where Tiffany is amazing both from a chef’s perspective and a guest’s engagement,” says Foley. “The back of the house is all the operational components. Anything that smells legal comes my way.”Roots Chicken Shak has a culture of buying local. The chain endeavors to keep the menu narrow and focused—emphasizing chef Tiffany’s southern upbringing and preference for dishes with local, fresh ingredients and spices—to keep ordering and packaging processes simple and seamless. Roots found the ideal packing partner in H-E-B.“We’re quick service. We knew that in order to make the numbers that we needed to make, it wasn’t just about everyone coming in and eating—we needed our pickup and delivery to be a large part of our program,” says Derry. “I wanted to make sure that we had proper materials… not everything works for chicken.”Listen to the episode to learn more about the making of duck fat fried chicken, as well as how to successfully invest in your community!
5/12/202146 minutes, 55 seconds
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60. Life Changing Chicken! | Lewis Rudd - Ezell’s Fried Chicken

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, host Sam Stanovich sits down with Lewis Rudd, the president and chief executive officer of Ezell’s Fried Chicken, to explore chicken, food trucks, and marketing transparency.This episode is sponsored by DAWN® PROFESSIONAL - Pot and Pan
5/4/202139 minutes, 28 seconds
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58. 100% Plant Based, 100% Yummy! | Carin Stutz - Native Foods

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Carin Stutz, president and chief executive officer at Native Foods, to explore earth-friendly eating, investing in your community, as well as the ins and outs of packaging and catering.
4/14/202141 minutes, 10 seconds
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57. Making America Run! | Brandy Blackwell - Dunkin’ Brands

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Brandy Blackwell, the director of new business at Dunkin’ Brands, to explore third party deployment, building loyalty, and managing the influx of drive-thru customers.This episode is sponsored by DAWN® PROFESSIONAL - Pot and Pan
4/6/202134 minutes, 56 seconds
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56. Celebrating Diversity! | Gerry Fernandez - MFHA

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Gerry Fernandez, the president and founder of the Multicultural Foodservice and Hospitality Alliance (MFHA), to explore building culturally intelligent brands and leaders, and developing multicultural solutions that help raise the top line, improve the bottom line, and strengthen your brand.
3/24/202144 minutes, 52 seconds
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55. Top Takeout Trends 2021

This episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering offers a mixed lineup featuring some of the notable clips of and trade secrets discussed in the podcast series. If you are a bit behind on episodes, this collection can catch you up on the best moments of hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich’s interviews this past year with:Brian Duffy, a chef, traveler, consultant, host, and restaurateurMegan Danielson, the head of industry, food, beverage, and restaurants at GoogleJim Knight, the owner and chief executive officer of Knight SpeakerKathleen Wood, the founder of Kathleen Wood Partners and the co-founder of Suzy’s SwirlDon Fox, the chief executive officer of Firehouse Subs This episode is sponsored by DAWN® PROFESSIONAL - Pot and Pan
3/16/202120 minutes, 20 seconds
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54. Heartfelt Service and History | Don Fox - Firehouse Subs

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Don Fox, the chief executive officer of Firehouse Subs, to explore the latest in off-premises and packaging trends, as well as the importance of giving back to the community.
3/9/202159 minutes, 9 seconds
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53. Walk-On's Game Plan for Success | Scott Taylor - Walk On’s

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Scott Taylor, the president and chief operating officer of Walk On’s, to explore recent off-premises trends and the importance of building culture and community. This episode is sponsored by DAWN® PROFESSIONAL - Pot and Pan
3/2/202143 minutes, 36 seconds
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52. How to Gain a ‘Culinary Edge’ in Off-Premises | Aaron Noveshen - Starbird

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Aaron Noveshen, the founder and chief executive officer of The Culinary Edge and Starbird, to explore ghost kitchens and the latest off-premises trends.
2/24/202140 minutes, 36 seconds
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51. Swirling Happiness and Leadership | Kathleen Wood - Suzy’s Swirl

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Kathleen Wood, the founder of Kathleen Wood Partners and the co-founder of frozen yogurt company Suzy’s Swirl, to explore catering desserts, handling digital hospitality, and cultivating dynamic, collaborative leadership.
2/16/202151 minutes, 13 seconds
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50. Off-Premises Cali Style! | Geoffrey Goodman - Fresh Brothers

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Geoffrey Goodman, the chief executive officer of Fresh Brothers, to explore restaurant trends, off-premises basics, and ghost kitchens.
2/10/202138 minutes
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49. WowBao My Takeout! | Geoff Alexander - Wow Bao

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Geoff Alexander, the president and chief executive officer of Wow Bao, to explore the ins and outs of the dark kitchen space.
2/2/202144 minutes, 5 seconds
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48. Love is Free. Guac is Extra | Monty Moran - Chipotle

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Monty Moran, an author, filmmaker, and the former co-chief executive officer of Chipotle Mexican Grill, to explore the importance of leadership and how to help brands thrive.
1/26/202149 minutes, 40 seconds
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47. Off-Premises Keys to Thrive | Shawn Walchef - Cali BBQ Media

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Shawn Walchef, the founder of Cali BBQ Media, to explore how restaurants can use technology and digital advertising to drive off-premises sales.
1/20/202145 minutes, 44 seconds
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46. Off-Premises? Near Premises: Order Anywhere | Rom Krupp - OneDine

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Rom Krupp, the chief executive officer and founder of OneDine, to explore off-premises ordering and how restaurants can leverage technology to drive sales and capture more self-delivery.
1/13/202142 minutes, 34 seconds
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45. Takeout at 200 Cars per Hour | Thom Crosby - Pal's Sudden Service

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Thom Crosby, the president of Pal's Sudden Service, to explore how to handle hiring, employee training, and managing your off-premise business.
12/23/202044 minutes, 14 seconds
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44. Soggy To-Go Food Sucks! | Bill Birgen - SAVRPak

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Bill Birgen, the chief technology officer at SAVRPak and the founder and chief executive officer of Soggy Food Sucks, to explore how the restaurant and hospitality industry can improve to-go food quality.
12/16/202027 minutes, 1 second
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43. Takeout That Rocks! | Jim Knight

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Jim Knight, the owner and chief executive officer of Knight Speaker, to explore takeout and the future of hospitality amidst the pandemic.
12/9/202050 minutes, 58 seconds
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42. Macro-View of Delivery and Catering | Darien Terrell

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Darien Terrell, the president of DeliverThat, to explore the current status of delivery and catering, balancing in-house and third party delivery, and helping the industry thrive.
12/2/202030 minutes, 18 seconds
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41. Changing the Guest Service Model | Zack Oates

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Zack Oates, the founder and chief executive officer of Ovation, to explore the ever-evolving guest service model, and measuring consumer feedback.
11/18/202040 minutes, 31 seconds
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40. Pasta, Pizza and Pivots | Carl Howard

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Carl Howard, the president and chief executive officer of Fazoli's, to explore menu innovation, food safety strategies, and how to thrive in a crowded market.
11/11/202033 minutes, 43 seconds
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39. Changing the Landscape of Digital Ordering | Noah Glass

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Noah Glass, the founder and chief executive officer of Olo, to discuss online ordering and the burgeoning era of digital hospitality.
10/22/202044 minutes, 58 seconds
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38. Catering is Alive | Mo Asgari

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Mo Asgari, the president at MonkeySoft Solutions, an ezCater Company, to explore the ins and outs of catering amidst the ongoing coronavirus crisis.
10/15/202039 minutes, 3 seconds
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37. Pizza, Pasta, Chips, and Ghost Kitchens

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Eric Greenwald, the president of Grimaldi's Pizzeria, to explore menu innovation, social media marketing, and the future of third party delivery.
9/23/202040 minutes, 47 seconds
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36. Digital Marketing to Drive Takeout Orders

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Tristen Larsen, the founder of OrderingAds, to explore how strategic investments in digital marketing can help your takeout, catering, and delivery businesses grow.
9/9/202037 minutes, 1 second
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35. The Future of Delivery

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with John Isbell, the director of learning and development for Portillo’s, to discuss self-delivery and menu innovation amidst the coronavirus crisis.
8/26/202035 minutes, 58 seconds
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34. Breaking from Tradition, Domination and Duffified

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Chef Brian Duffy to explore menu innovation, sales mix, self-delivery, social media marketing, and data management.Duffy is a lifelong Philadelphia native with over twenty years of chef experience. He has owned and operated restaurants, served as a consultant, and made a number of television appearances on the television series Bar Rescue. He now has his own company, the Duffified Experience Group, and a travel podcast called Duffified Live.
8/12/202045 minutes, 8 seconds
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33. Google to Off Premise Domination!

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Megan Danielson, the head of industry, food, beverage, and restaurants at Google, to explore how restaurants can implement Google systems and innovations to assist with takeout, delivery, and catering.
8/4/202034 minutes, 16 seconds
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32. Tired of Tablet Hell

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Sterling Douglass, the co-founder and chief executive officer of Chowly.
7/7/202036 minutes, 19 seconds
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31. Packaging Changes and Prospecting Today for Success Tomorrow

On this episode of the new Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich explore recent packaging changes, and discuss why operators should continue to invest their time and resources in their catering business.
6/29/202039 minutes, 38 seconds
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30. Reinventing the Restaurant Experience

On this episode of the new Takeout, Delivery, and Catering podcast series, hosts TJ Schier and Sam Stanovich sit down with Steve Bigari, the founder and chief executive officer of takeout order processing and restaurant call center Synq3.
6/17/202038 minutes, 1 second
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29. Firehouse Subs Prioritizes Consistency, Quality, and Speed of Service

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, podcast host Valerie Killifer chats with Risa Rappaport, the director of off-premise operations for Firehouse Subs. Rappaport joined the Firehouse Subs team in 2016.
5/1/202034 minutes, 2 seconds
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28. DeliverThat on Delivering Your Brand’s Promise

On this episode of the former Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, podcast host Valerie Killifer sits down with Aaron Hoffman, the co-founder of popular third-party delivery service DeliverThat.Aaron Hoffman and John Zinno founded DeliverThat in their Ohio University dorm room in 2013, hand-delivering countless orders to their classmates for two years. The company has since evolved into a catering delivery solution for over 500 restaurants and brands in 45 major metropolitan areas.
4/19/202020 minutes, 59 seconds
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27. Next Door American Eatery on Keeping Catering Consistent

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, podcast host Valerie Killifer chats with Elyse Boule, the director of catering for casual “real food” restaurant Next Door American Eatery.
9/10/201932 minutes, 7 seconds
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26. Nathan's Famous Updates its Catering and Delivery Channels

Valerie Killifer chats with James Walker, the senior vice president of the beloved Nathan’s Famous. Walker joined the restaurant industry as a chef back in the 1990s, and moved to the management and operations side by the end of the decade. With previous experience overseeing such brands as Baja Fresh, Cinnabon, and Subway, he joined the Nathan’s Famous team earlier this year and aims to grow the chain’s catering and delivery sales channels.
8/29/201916 minutes, 1 second
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25. Data is King: How to Leverage Your Consumer Insights to Drive Catering, Delivery Sales

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, podcast host Valerie Killifer sits down with Daring Solutions founder and CEO Jeff Chasney.Daring Solutions uses artificial intelligence to optimize restaurant kitchens and directly help staff improve sales, profits, and customer satisfaction. In this episode, Chasney shares how industry operators can leverage data to grow long-term sales in a marketplace that has been trending toward off-premise—according to Chasney, a reported 22 percent of delivery drivers tamper with orders.
8/20/201939 minutes, 50 seconds
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24. SLAB BBQ on Catering and Channel Management as a Fast Casual Restaurant

On this episode of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, podcast hosts Valerie Killifer and Erle Dardick chat with Mark Avalos and Rafael Robinson, the co-owners of SLAB BBQ. Avalos began SLAB in a barbecue trailer as a catering business in 2006. He subsequently opened a food trailer at the University of Texas in Austin, and established the company’s first brick and mortar restaurant location in 2014 with Rafael Robinson. A second SLAB BBQ location was opened in 2016.
8/6/201937 minutes, 31 seconds
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23. Building a Menu that Differentiates Between Takeout, Catering, and Delivery

On this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, podcast hosts Valerie Killifer and Erle Dardick chat with Tad Low to discuss the importance of menu differentiation within off-premise.Tad Low is the Director of Off-Premise for Moe's Southwest Grill, an Atlanta based fast-casual restaurant chain with over 725 domestic and international locations. Low is leading a team that is working to bring delivery to the forefront of the guest experience.
6/28/201941 minutes, 54 seconds
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22. Rethinking Food Safety In the Era of Food Delivery

On this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, podcast host Valerie Killifer chats with Anthony Russo and Betsy Craig to discuss food safety concerns in the restaurant industry.Anthony Russo is the Director of International Sales and the Domestic Regulatory Affairs Officer for Lava Gel Technologies. Lava Gel is a non-toxic solution made from natural minerals that, when activated by water, is able to create a long-lasting heat in food products. Betsy Craig is a national professional speaker and the founder and CEO of MenuTrinfo. MenuTrinfo provides certified, FDA-compliant menu labeling services.
6/17/201926 minutes, 24 seconds
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21. Training Sales Employees For The Modern Catering Landscape

On this episode of Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, our hosts Valerie Killifer and Erle Dardick sit down with Tracy Avolio, Vice President of The Catering Institute to discuss how to train sales employees for the modern catering landscape.
6/3/201936 minutes, 9 seconds
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20. Why Having An Advanced On-Demand Restaurant Strategy Can Set Your Brand Apart

Ever wondered how a great on-demand strategy can differentiate your concept from the rest? On this episode of Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, our host Valerie Killifer sits down with Mark Toth, Founder and CEO of Urban Wok, founded in 2018 in Minneapolis, to figure out just that.
5/23/201928 minutes, 1 second
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19. CEO Frank Paci Shares Why Corner Bakery is Considered a Catering Powerhouse

Having a proven strategy for your catering channel can take your restaurant from just making the margins to expanding your concept. The variables for creating a profitable catering channel are rapidly evolving, so best to learn from the best.
4/18/201929 minutes, 31 seconds
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18. What is in Store For Takeout, Delivery, and Catering in 2019

Over the last half-decade, the restaurant industry has experienced a paradigm shift from dine-in experiential dining to off-premise dining in the form of catering, takeout, and delivery. Third-party marketplaces like Uber Eats and GrubHub have proliferated and the pressure on the restaurant and foodservice operations to "buy-in," is heavy. But for many, the cost has outweighed the benefit.
4/1/201926 minutes, 32 seconds
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17. Packaging is a Key Differentiator to Off-Premise

On this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, Valerie and Erle speak with Jennifer Crawford, director of off-premise sales at Fazoli’s System Management, an Italian quick-service restaurant, and Ernie Davis, National Account Manager for Accurate Box, a box manufacturing plant that produces high graphics boxes. The group discusses what is quickly becoming a true differentiator for brands as more and more product is going the way of takeout, catering, and delivery.
1/28/201937 minutes, 50 seconds
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16. Your Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Questions Answered

We are nearing the end of the first season, so in this episode, we decided to answer some of your questions. From food safety issues in the delivery channel to social media marketing, we cover the gambit of the most significant problems facing operators today.
1/9/201955 minutes, 8 seconds
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15. A Ghost Restaurant Can Maximize Efficiencies and Increase Profits

Today, off-premise driven by technology, and a generation that grew up on convenience is changing the restaurant model again, likely forever. By now, we have all heard the term ghost restaurants or virtual restaurants, and that this is the next big thing. The definition of a ghost restaurant depends on who you talk to but basically it is defined as a restaurant that only offers delivery — no store front. The savvy restaurants are using this model to their advantage and more innovation around ghost restaurants is happening all the time.
12/7/201834 minutes, 7 seconds
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14. Operator Guidelines For Building Delivery Sales Through Third-Party Providers

On this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, Valerie and Erle speak with Gracie Prasanson, director of sales for Jason’s Deli, about how restaurant operators working with third-party delivery providers can make sure that the appropriate measures are in place, and known risks are mitigated so that your restaurant does not get outmaneuvered by the third-party provider.
11/19/201830 minutes
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13. Centralized Services Can Increase Your Restaurants Efficiency and As A Result Your Revenue

It is estimated that the average restaurant misses 6 - 12 calls a day that could be leading to additional sales and revenue in your catering channel. Enter Intel and Voice Teleservices who provided centralized call center operations to make sure that your restaurant is not losing out on potential customers.   
10/25/201837 minutes, 25 seconds
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12. Best Practices to a Successful Off-Premise Program

We meet Mike Axiotis, CFE, President & CEO, Lehigh Valley Restaurant Group, who is the franchise operator for Red Robin, we will explore how one franchise system launched an off-premise program, maintains their program, trains the staff, and markets themselves to keep customers coming back.
10/9/201840 minutes, 32 seconds
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11. Artificial Intelligence Is Primed To Drive Economic Growth In Food Service

In this episode of The Takeout Delivery and Catering Show, Valerie and Erle talk with Ted Cohn, Co-Founder, and CTO at Orderscape Inc, to talk about AI in food service. AI is predicted to be a major player in economic growth over the next decade in food service.
9/19/201832 minutes, 12 seconds
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10. Meet The Catering Council for Multi-Unit Restaurant Operators

On this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, our host, Valerie Killifer, interviews Courtney Smith, VP of Off-Premise at Newk’s Eatery, Ed Keller, Director of Off-Premise Development at Corner Bakery, and James Clark, Director of Food and Beverage at Mama Fu’s.
8/20/201850 minutes, 42 seconds
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09. Leverage Third-Party Partnerships and Technology to Increase Profits

There are so many option and so many players, it's a challenge to figure out what is the right blueprint for off-premise success. The fundamentals of your off-premise strategies are crucial to your future success. In today's episode, Valerie and Erle speak with Richard Hodges, Vice President of Operations Services at La Madeleine. La Madeleine has had 6 years of consecutive growth in the off-premise space. Richard Hodges shares their industry leading strategies like how to leverage third-party partnerships, using the technology to reach customers on multiple platforms, and streamlining the technology to maximize efficiency and profitability.
7/31/201826 minutes, 42 seconds
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08. How to Create Systems in a Franchise Model for Off-Premise Foodservice

In this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show we talk with Jim Vinz, CEO of Genghis Grill, about the systems and strategies Genghis Grill developed to become a model of success by empowering their franchisees to succeed in the tumultuous off-premise ecosystem.
7/17/201831 minutes, 7 seconds
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07. Across Continents: Off-Premise Comparisons At Home and Abroad

Whether you’re are in the UK or the US, technology is driving innovation. But where are we all going and are these technological solutions helping our restaurant businesses? In off-premise, delivery services and 3rd-party marketplaces are the disruptors everyone is talking about, at least over the last five years. Restaurant operators think they have little choice except to jump on the delivery brandwagon or be left behind in its wake. On this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering show, Valerie, and Erle sit down with Peter Backman, a U.K.-based consultant who specializes in the eating out market overseas. Peter, Valerie, and Erle discuss how the 5 Pillars of Successful Takeout, Delivery & Catering can reposition brands across the world to take the wheel. This discussion includes the onslaught of independent, aggregated, and third-party delivery providers, and the new paradigm of off-premise operations in restaurants at home and abroad.
6/7/201833 minutes, 47 seconds
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06. The Field Day App Connects Brands with Ambassadors to Execute That Last-mile Sales Opportunity

Today's restaurant chain has many channels of foodservice offerings like brick and mortar, takeout, delivery, and catering.  Many times, all of these channels are centralized under one facility.  One challenge for these restaurants is creating a sales and marketing plan that increases awareness for all offerings.  For example, an off-premise offering is a local proposition to the consumer and for national chains that have all-encompassing sales and marketing strategies, awareness around their local offerings are generally underdeveloped. On this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show Valerie and Erle speak with Alex Nocifera, founder of Field Day; a platform and marketplace for brand ambassadors helping big brands drive local marketing efforts, such as catering sales outreach. 
5/14/201834 minutes, 10 seconds
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05. A Conversation with Red Robin on Best Practices for Restaurant Takeout and Catering Differentiation

Takeout and catering are completely different businesses, and the secret to making them work successfully is in the design of different consumer solutions for each channel, including unique transaction workflow, menus and product selection, packaging, centralized services, and workflow — and each have entirely different strategies. In this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show we speak with Trudy Jones - Director of Alternative Platforms for Red Robin, to explore the different elements required for takeout and catering, and why each one is important for delivering a brand experience that keeps customers coming back for more.
4/13/201832 minutes, 17 seconds
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04. Your Restaurant Off-Premise Success Depends On Building A Strong Foundation

The 5 Pillars of Successful Restaurant Takeout, Delivery and Catering, authored by Erle Dardick, is the foundation of building a strategic profitable off-premise sector of your business.  Centralized service strategies, sales and marketing, smart and effective operations, and strong leadership from the C-suite are paramount when it comes to building a scalable and profitable off-premises business. In this episode of The Takeout, Delivery, and Catering show hosts Erle Dardick and Valerie Killifer discuss actionable steps that can change the way your restaurant handles its off-premise business.
3/30/201849 minutes, 36 seconds
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03. The Technology Blueprint for Off-Premise Sales Growth

Technology is the number one operational enabler that connects all the dots on the multi-channel, on-demand customer experience. It also simultaneously opens up the back-end world of restaurant operations for the entire enterprise. But due to the breakneck speed of technology innovation and uncertainty over standards and norms in off-premises operations, the segment is earning a reputation as ‘the wild west’ of the restaurant industry. However, technology roadmaps that create a seamless customer experience are not only possible, they’re the only way to survive the battles that await operators. In episode three of the Takeout, Delivery, and Catering Show, we sit down with Mo Asgari, President of MonkeyMedia Software, to break down the barriers operators face and will highlight the best technology design for modern-age full-scale deployments.
3/15/201832 minutes, 41 seconds
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02. Off-Premise Insights — What the Data Tells us about Takeout & Catering Operations

In this episode, we talk with Darren Tristano, a foodservice trend expert and 24-year veteran of Technomic Research and Consulting, where he co-founded Technomic Information Services and continues to provide industry insights and perspectives on restaurant, consumer and menu trends. With a pulse on the industry, we look into what the data is telling us about takeout and catering operations.
2/20/201827 minutes, 6 seconds
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01. The Off-Premise Paradigm Shift

In this first episode, we discuss the off-premise paradigm shift and how operators need to distinguish the business logic behind catering, takeout and delivery, and why it is important for restaurants to also distinguish between the three.
2/20/201818 minutes, 34 seconds