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Biography

Jonathan Maze

Editor-in-Chief

 Contact Jonathan

Restaurant Business 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.”

Articles by
Jonathan Maze

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Financing

Something is not working between McDonald’s and its franchisees

The Bottom Line: The burger giant is facing the latest in a string of disputes with its operators, despite the company’s strong sales and record store-level cash flow and valuations.

Financing

What it means to have a good workplace culture

A Deeper Dive: James Pogue, a leadership and diversity consultant, joins the podcast to talk about what it means for companies to have a more inclusive culture.

A group representing Black franchisees voted “no confidence” in CEO Chris Kempczinski. Other groups could take similar steps amid anger over new renewal standards. “An absolute declaration of war on owners," one operator said.

The chicken sandwich chain remained consumers’ most-preferred restaurant chain, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index. But their desire for fast food is waning.

The Bottom Line: The business is increasingly bifurcating. Fast-food restaurants are focused on speed and production. But demand for experiential dining remains high. Those in between may struggle.

Ian Borden was named CFO as Kevin Ozan is promoted to oversee strategy before he retires next year. Marion Gross was named chief supply chain officer.

The Bottom Line: Inflation concerns and margin pressures haven’t just hurt stocks. The market for restaurant deals has slowed to a crawl as sellers wait until things improve.

The bakery-café chain, which at one time helped launch Panera Bread, opened its first location under its new owners and has plans for more.

Borrowing costs are increasing as the Federal Reserve looks to slow inflation. But they seem unlikely to slow the industry’s growth.

The Bottom Line: Bloomberg suggested that one of the chain’s directors could take the position, including former Domino’s CEO Ritch Allison and former McDonald’s CMO Mary Dillon.

The burger giant has “fine-tuned” rules for renewing franchise agreements as it works to bring new operators into the system. Operators say the changes are an "overreach."

The burger chain is doubling down on its Impossible Foods offerings with a pair of new options, one of which features bacon, which is not a plant.

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