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Viableware Raises $6.5 Million in Series B Financing

Viableware, innovators of the Rail payment platform for full-service restaurants, announced that it has closed $6.5 million in Series B funding.  The round was led by a syndicate of prominent angel investors and included participation from Swiftsure Capital LLC in Seattle.

Top 10 Full-Service Franchise Opportunities

Full-service restaurants account for 5 percent of all franchised establishments in the U.S., notes Rick Bisio, franchise consultant and author of The Educated Franchisee. And while opportunities abound, full-service restaurants remain a capital-intensive venture.

Fresh Ingredients and Choice Are Key Factors in Restaurant Consumers’ Value Equation

Consumers want fresh ingredients and choice when they visit restaurants finds new foodservice market research by The NPD Group, a leading global information company. Although quality for the price is the top value driver for foodservice consumers, fresh ingredients is the second most important factor followed by choice, according to a recently released NPD study that models how much each value factor contributes to where consumers choose to eat.

Technomic Finds Domestic Table Wine Fuels Wine Industry's Growth

The wine industry delivered another year of volume and dollar growth in spite of supply constraints and a slow economy in 2012, and is on track for continued expansion in 2013. According to the just-released 2013 WineTAB report from Technomic, part of its Trends in Adult Beverage (TAB) series, wine volume grew 2.

Strong Growth Predicted to Continue in Craft Spirits

According to GuestMetrics, while craft spirits brands account for a relatively small portion of the overall spirits category on-premise, they are growing at a rapid pace.“In analyzing the nearly 600 craft spirits suppliers we track in our system, our data indicates they have been growing at a double digit clip thus far in 2013 in the on-premise channel, and are gaining momentum.

Industry Salaries and Bonuses on the Rise

Last week, People Report released results from the compensation portion of the 2013 Corporate Compensation and Benefits survey. Results showed salaries for restaurant hourly and corporate positions budgeted to increase on average by as much as 2.

FSR 50: Five Segments, Fifty Leaders

The FSR 50 salutes top performers whose 2012 revenues led the industry across five segments of the full-service restaurant industry: Casual Dining; Family Dining; Upscale Dining; Restaurant Groups; and Independent Operators.

FSR 50: 10 High-Performing, Stand-Alone Restaurants

In the restaurant game, there is no singular path to high revenues. This emerged as the one prevailing truth when FSR began its quest to highlight 10 of America's highest-performing, stand-alone restaurants.

FSR 50: Top 10 Casual-Dining Chains

Casual dining, where checks average $12 to $50 and there is some alcohol service, is still clawing out of a deep hole that saw customers trading down to quick service and fast casual. However, in 2012 this sector captured sales and unit growth, and continues to reassert itself in the American consumers' consciousness.

FSR 50: Top 10 Restaurant Groups

The nation's top 10 restaurant groups collectively managed more than $33 billion in 2012 revenues and more than 12,000 restaurants .From DineEquity's completed push to franchise 99 percent of the Applebee's system to the retirement of venerable Ruby Tuesday executive Sandy Beall, America's highest-performing restaurant groups made waves of strategic plays to bolster relevancy, heighten profitability, and attract guests.

FSR 50: Top 10 Upscale-Dining Chains

Upscale dining, characterized primarily by dinner-focused concepts with extensive beverage programs and check averages above $50, was battered by the recession's money-saving realities. But things are finally looking up for the restaurant industry's upscale-dining stalwarts—with sales growth and unit growth in 2012 among most of the segment's major players.

FSR 50: Top 10 Family-Dining Chains

Family dining—typically defined by check averages below $12 and with very limited or no alcohol service—faces an all-out battle for relevancy amid sharpening competition and shifting consumer-dining habits.