As Everytable prepares its first class of in-house cultivated franchisees, the company announced an investment totaling $8 million to further the mission of bridging the racial wealth gap to ownership.
The investment, managed by Mission Driven Finance, will add to the support of Everytable’s Social Equity Franchise, or SEF, fund, which is designed to tap restaurant-level talent and prepare them to own their own franchise locations. The goal is to offer opportunity to more people from marginalized communities, who are often shut out from franchise ownership.
“We’re thrilled to support Everytable’s mission with this fund,” said David Lynn, Mission Driven Finance co-founder, in a statement. “Supporting franchisees who wouldn’t normally get a chance at business ownership is directly aligned with our thesis of closing capital gaps to close opportunity gaps.”
Through Everytable’s SEF, franchise candidates can work full time as store managers while they receive training on leadership, entrepreneurship and business operations, along with mentoring to help them prepare for ownership.
SEF also provides 100% of capital to become a franchisee. The first group is expected to take ownership this summer.
One of the first franchisees will be Dee Adimora, a longtime store manager, who said in a statement, “I’ve always been passionate about Everytable’s mission to bring healthier food to underserved communities, and the franchise program gave me an opportunity to become more deeply involved in the business, grow financial stability, and work on a legacy to leave behind for my family.”
Reinvestment Fund led an initial $8 million syndicate of Community Development Financial Institutions—organizations designed to create economic opportunity in low-income communities—in a debt financing for Everytable that could grow up to $16 million as more investors join the group.
The California-based Community Vision Capital & Consulting joined the syndicate first with a $4 million pledge to SEF, which will help support the first group of graduates take ownership this summer, Everytable said.
Catherine Howard, Community Vision’s president, called the fund a powerful new model that will allow hourly workers to become business owners.
“We know that business ownership is one of the most powerful vehicles for building wealth,” Howard said in a statement. “This fund helps open the doors of ownership among those who are usually locked out.”
Everytable is an omni-channel concept with 52 retail locations in California and another eight in New York City offering grab-and-go meals prepared fresh in central commissary kitchens. Pricing varies by zip code median income to keep the healthful menu accessible to all. The company also feeds a network of SmartFridge vending machines and offers an e-commerce meal delivery program.
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