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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.”

Topics

As lines blur, the term ‘fast casual’ has become obsolete

The Bottom Line: As more chains like Chipotle and Shake Shack add drive-thrus and focus on takeout, they look more like the fast-food restaurants from which they tried to differentiate themselves.

Financing

Soaring inflation and a return to normal could take a bite out of delivery

The Bottom Line: Costly third-party delivery orders could drop as higher prices hurt consumers’ pocketbooks. But could this be a sign of tightening consumer spending?

The Bottom Line: The pizza delivery chain bested its primary rivals because of its embrace of third-party delivery, its focus on premiumization, and Shaq.

The Bottom Line: Fears are growing that higher interest rates to stifle inflation will ultimately trigger a recession. Here’s what this could mean for restaurants.

The Bottom Line: Demand for restaurant acquisitions has been heavy, despite an early-year break. Experts expect that to continue even as lending gets more expensive.

The Bottom Line: Among winners and losers during the fourth quarter, fine dining stood out. But strong performances were common as the industry largely recovered its lost sales.

The Bottom Line: Operators are forecasting massive increases in food costs this year. Do they have enough pricing power after a year of aggressive increases?

The Bottom Line: The Melting Pot had its best year in a decade last year. One reason is consumer demand for get-togethers.

The Bottom Line: Even though operators are raising prices at historically high rates, they are still not capturing their increased costs.

The Bottom Line: Activist investors have long wanted changes at the burger giant but its first real board battle in modern history will be fought over pigs.

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