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The Bottom Line

Jonathan Maze The Bottom Line

Restaurant Business Executive Editor-in-Chief Jonathan Maze is a longtime industry journalist who writes about restaurant finance, mergers and acquisitions and the economy, with a particular focus on quick-service restaurants. He writes daily about the factors influencing the operating environment, including labor and food costs and various industry trends such as technology and delivery.

Jonathan has been widely quoted in media publications such as the New York Times and the Washington Post and has appeared on CNBC, Yahoo Finance and NPR. He writes a weekly finance-focused newsletter for Restaurant Business, The Bottom Line, and is the host of the weekly podcast “A Deeper Dive.”

Financing

McDonald’s steps out of the political shadows

The Bottom Line: The burger giant traditionally lets others do all the talking on major political issues. But more recently it has made its voice heard on topics like California's business climate or crime in Chicago.

Financing

Companies face a tough lending market as their debt comes due

The Bottom Line: Rising interest rates and a weak M&A market could prove troublesome for companies looking for an out from their debt troubles.

The Bottom Line: If a recession hits, price-weary consumers could look for more deals. But mass discount programs may be too difficult in an inflationary environment.

The Bottom Line: Producer prices for food declined more than 1% last month, though eggs and beef were up. And restaurant sales declined.

The Bottom Line: The chain is eyeing its first Tennessee restaurants in 2026. But it has also ceded growth to other competitors.

The Bottom Line: The closely held burger chain’s decision to open a corporate hub in Tennessee, where it has no units, is a head scratcher. But there are good business reasons for the move.

The Bottom Line: Sale processes like the one the sandwich giant is apparently planning do not come very often. That doesn’t mean a sale is a slam dunk. And $10 billion may be tough to get.

The Bottom Line: The owner of Twin Peaks, Johnny Rockets and Fazoli’s has shifted its attention to more targeted acquisitions and could spin off or sell some assets.

The Bottom Line: The bankruptcy of TOMS King Holdings may be the first domino in a substantial change in the burger chain’s franchisee base as it looks to turn itself around.

The Bottom Line: Consumers’ shift to value could be turning them onto convenience stores, and the Pennsylvania-based concept is apparently leading the way.

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