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Quality Restaurant Group featured in Franchise Times as a Dealmaker of the Year 2021

Quality Restaurant Group and GenRock Capital, led by two men in their mid-30s who are “great, great” friends and started just three years ago, acquired 62 Sonic Drive-In restaurants and 23 real estate parcels in Florida and Alabama from Buddy McClain’s MVP Sonics operation. McClain retains his holdings in Mississippi.

That followed the purchase of 27 Arby’s stores from Bentley Miller Corp. in September 2019, and the purchase of 67 Moe’s Southwest Grill stores from four different franchisees, in March 2020.

“This is our 10th transaction in the past two years and our sixth transaction in the past 12 months,” said Matt Slaine, the 37-year-old CEO of QRG. “And we’ve bought almost entirely family businesses, so we’ve gotten really good at understanding the dynamics of a family business and positioning ourselves as a buyer of choice.”

In the past year, QRG expanded its restaurant portfolio by 75 percent and added about 150 restaurants in the Pizza Hut, Arby’s and Moe’s brands. Based in Greensboro, North Carolina, it owns 345 restaurants and has 10,000 employees in 15 states. The Sonic acquisition fulfills a wish for a burger brand.

“Sonic was just a brand we admired and one that happens to have done very, very well in this COVID time period,” said Slaine. “Getting a deal done through a pandemic was interesting and challenging in its own ways, but we kind of persevered over the last nine months” and closed in October.

GenRock Capital Management, the private equity fund backing Quality Restaurant Group, was started in 2017 by Matt Ailey, a friend of Slaine for the past 15 years. In 2018, Slaine decided to join Ailey to head up Quality Restaurant Group, the operating arm of the partnership.

Ailey, 34, was working for Corvex, a hedge fund that was the largest shareholder of Yum Brands at the time, Slaine said. “His whole idea was, we’re in a pretty unique time in the quick-service business where there’s just an abundance of family businesses that are ready to be monetized,” Slaine said, at the same time franchisors were looking to consolidate. “It was a unique time to raise capital.”

The first fund raised $100 million from institutional investors, mainly family offices. “We upsized the fund over the summer to $130 million,” Slaine said, “because our investors realized the opportunity we have. I can’t compliment our investors enough—two years later their willingness to come back to the table and add $30 million during COVID.”

Ailey acknowledged that closing 10 acquisitions over a three-year-period “is kind of a big splash,” but he downplays the track record. “I look at it as, we’re doing our job. You raise a fund, you have to deploy it. It’s a lot different to have a design or a plan and actually go and execute on it,” Ailey said. “It’s not just buying restaurants, it’s actually building a company,” which is where Slaine’s ability comes in. “It’s one thing to buy restaurants, but if you can’t operate the assets, then you don’t really have that much.”

 

https://www.franchisetimes.com/franchise_times_cover_stories/backed-by-genrock-quality-restaurant-group-makes-m-a-splash/article_aff24ca6-8cb4-11eb-8565-6ffbb8e7edf3.html

 

 

 

 

Quality Restaurant Group Appoints Company’s First Chief Financial Officer

Greensboro, NC (March 29, 2021) – Quality Restaurant Group, one of the country’s largest and fastest growing quick service and fast casual restaurant franchise owners, today announced the appointment of Matt Zeiger as the company’s first Chief Financial Officer (CFO). As CFO, Zeiger will oversee financial, information technology, facilities, and real estate for the company including their portfolio of over 350 Pizza Hut, Arby’s Moe’s Southwest Grill Restaurant and Sonic Drive-In locations throughout the United States.

“I am pleased to welcome Matt to our team,” said Matt Slaine, CEO of Quality Restaurant Group and GenRock Operating Partner. “His extensive experience in and understanding of the quick service and fast casual businesses will allow Quality Restaurant Group to further grow and help make our vision of becoming the most respected and well-run private organizations in the industry a reality.”

With a distinguished career of over 25 years of leadership and financial management experience, Zeiger brings a wealth of knowledge to Quality Restaurant Group. Most recently Zeiger served as Chief Operating Officer & Chief Financial Officer of Fleet Feet, where he provided strategic oversight of operational and financial functions for the company including their 180 owned and franchised retail locations. Prior to joining the team at Fleet Feet, Zeiger spent 16 years at YUM! Brands, Inc. where he held multiple senior-level finance roles including Chief Financial Officer of Pizza Hut Korea, where he oversaw 330 company and franchise restaurants and Vice President of Internal Audit for YUM! Brands. In addition, Zeiger worked at Taco Bell, overseeing field and franchise finance as well as at Deloitte & Touch, LLP as part of their auditing group.  He holds a Bachelor of Science, Business & Accounting from California State University, Long Beach.

“Quality Restaurant Group is a company that I have been watching grow and very quickly become a leader within the quick service and fast casual franchised restaurant industry,” said Zeiger. “I look forward to joining the leadership team to help them continue the strong trajectory and become the gold standard within the industry.”

Quality Restaurant Group is based in Greensboro, North Carolina, employs more than 9,000 people and is the parent company for Quality Huts, Quality Fresca, Quality Meats and Quality Drive-In.

For more information on Quality Restaurant Group, visit www.qualityrestaurantgroup.com.

Media and Press Inquiries: Curich Weiss

John Weiss  John@Curichweiss.com

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Quality Restaurant Group

Quality Restaurant Group, LLC is based in Greensboro, North Carolina and was founded with a strong focus on developing a world-class multi-branded quick service and fast casual franchising business. The company’s leadership have a vision of becoming QUALITY franchisee entrepreneurs that believe in a QUALITY PEOPLE-FIRST culture that drives an unparalleled spirit of customer service for our guests in our restaurants. The company owns and operates 67 Moe’s Southwest Grill restaurants in Florida, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and District of Columbia; nearly 200 Pizza Hut restaurants in Illinois, Indiana, Maryland and Pennsylvania; 27 Arby’s locations in Colorado, Montana, Nebraska, Wyoming and South Dakota; 62 Sonic Drive-in restaurants in Florida and Alabama. Check out www.qualityrestaurantgroup.com for more information.

QUALITY RESTAURANT GROUP ACQUIRES 62 SONIC DRIVE-IN LOCATIONS ACROSS ALABAMA AND FLORIDA

Greensboro, NC – (October 1, 2020) – Today, Quality Restaurant Group (QRG) announced the acquisition of 62 Sonic Drive-In locations across Florida and Alabama. The restaurants will be run by the new Quality Drive-In division of Quality Restaurant Group, formed exclusively to own and operate a best in class Sonic Drive-In franchisee group and related real estate. Over the past 12 months QRG has expanded its restaurant portfolio by 75% and added approximately 150 restaurants including new Pizza Huts, Arby’s and Moe’s Southwest Grills in addition to the recently acquired Sonic Drive-In stores. The company is now one of the nation’s largest multi-unit franchisee organizations with 345 restaurants and 10,000 employees in 15 states. The new Sonic portfolio is primarily located in Tuscaloosa, Mobile, throughout the panhandle of Florida and down the east and west coasts of Florida.

 

“Since founding Quality Restaurant Group a few years ago, we have watched and admired Sonic, a company we consider to be a gold standard in the quick-service restaurant category,” said Matt Slaine, CEO of Quality Restaurant Group and GenRock Operating Partner. “The drive-in concept, which is nostalgic to many, remains timeless and more popular than ever. Sonic is a place that families can enjoy throughout the week be it for a complete meal or just afternoon ice cream. This is a brand we believe in. We look forward to welcoming our new team members into the QRG family and continuing to grow our relationship with Sonic as well as parent company Inspire Brands out of Atlanta.”

 

Over the past six months, Quality Restaurant Group remained committed to its employees and the communities their restaurants support. The company continues to hire hundreds of employees, donate thousands of pizzas and burritos to front line workers, and raise funds for community organizations such as local United Way chapters. QRG has also bolstered its leadership team with the addition of senior roles in Finance, Accounting, Human Resources, Information Technology as well as additional corporate support personnel. In late August, QRG opened a new Restaurant Support Center and corporate office in Greensboro, NC, which is expected to bring additional jobs to the city.

 

Backed by GenRock Capital Management, Quality Restaurant Group is based in Greensboro, North Carolina, employs more than 10,000 people and is the parent company for Quality Huts, Quality Fresca, Quality Meats and now Quality Drive-In. Quality Huts is one of the largest Pizza Hut operators in the country with nearly 200 units across Illinois, Indiana, Maryland and Pennsylvania. Quality Meats is the operator of 27 Arby’s locations in Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, Montana and South Dakota. Quality Fresca operates 67 Moe’s Southwest Grill locations Florida, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and District of Columbia. Quality Drive-In operates 62 Sonic Drive-In restaurants in Florida and Alabama.

 

For more information on Quality Restaurant Group, including Quality Drive-In, visit www.qualityrestaurantgroup.com.

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Quality Restaurant Group

Quality Restaurant Group, LLC is based in Greensboro, North Carolina and was founded with a strong focus on developing a world-class multi-branded quick service and fast casual franchising business. The company’s leadership have a vision of becoming QUALITY franchisee entrepreneurs that believe in a QUALITY PEOPLE-FIRST culture that drives an unparalleled spirit of customer service for our guests in our restaurants. The company owns and operates 67 Moe’s Southwest Grill restaurants in Florida, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and District of Columbia; nearly 200 Pizza Hut restaurants in Illinois, Indiana, Maryland and Pennsylvania; 27 Arby’s locations in Colorado, Montana, Nebraska, Wyoming and South Dakota; 62 Sonic Drive-in restaurants in Florida and Alabama.  Check out www.qualityrestaurantgroup.com for more information.

Media Contacts:

John Weiss
CURICH|WEISS
john@curichweiss.com

Quality Meats Arby’s and Arby’s Foundation presents $6,500 donation to United Way of Western Nebraska

September 18, 2020

Scottsbluff Arby’s and Arby’s Foundation presents $6,500 donation to United Way of Western Nebraska for 2020 Week of Caring Food Insecurity Project-             

Scottsbluff- Scottsbluff Arby’s and Arby’s Foundation recently presented a $6,500 donation to United Way of Western Nebraska (UWWN) to help sponsor the 2020 UWWN Week of Caring Food Insecurity Project to help fight food insecurity in our communities.

 

Due to COVID-19 concerns and risks this year, the annual United Way in-person packaging event that was planned to be held on October 6, 2020 will not be held. The annual packaging event normally engages 225 community volunteers to package 75,000 meals of shelf-stable, microwaveable, fortified meals that stay in our communities and are distributed through 14 programs serving food insecure families.

 

Food insecurity remains a huge issue in the communities UWWN serves; and has been magnified due to COVID-19 implications. This year, the money raised for this project will be used to purchase pre-paid VISA cards which will then be distributed to the 14 partner programs who serve food insecure families. These programs will purchase food items specific to the needs of the clients they serve for the upcoming several months. These programs include 5 local school district weekend food backpack programs, local soup kitchens, food pantries and emergency food programs.

 

For more information on this event please call 308-635-2522. Donations specific to this project can be mailed to or dropped off at the United Way office -1517 Broadway Suite #106 Scottsbluff, NE 69361. (Please note these donations: 2020 Week of Caring).

 

Pictured- l to r – Jessica Evans (Arby’s Quality Meats West LLC), Aimee Rice (Arby’s Quality Meats West LLC), Steph Black (United Way), Jon Bentley (Arby’s, Vice President Operations Quality Meats West LLC)

 

Quality Fresca and QRG Featured in Franchise Times

Amid pandemic, Moe’s operator looks on the bright side

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis closed restaurant dining rooms on March 20, just 10 days after franchisee Quality Fresca acquired 46 Moe’s Southwest Grills in the state from four different franchisees. The new franchisee now sold burritos curbside. Predictably, revenues slumped.

Bad timing? Not really, insisted Matthew Slaine, chief executive of Quality Restaurant Group, which financed the deal that also included 21 Moe’s in northern Virginia, Maryland and Charleston, South Carolina. Quality Fresca is a new division of QRG formed to operate Moe’s.

“Certainly no one likes to see their comp sales down, but at the same time you get a real true sense of who the franchisor is, who your leadership team is — and what it can do during a stressful time very quickly,” he explained.

In fact, he added, there was more than a silver lining to the apparently ill-timed transaction. Seasoned operator Chris Grooms and his staff had the opportunity “to test things out instead of taking a back seat,” and the pandemic gave “us a green light to see what we are capable of,” Slaine recalled.

Since May 15, Florida has allowed restaurants to open dining rooms at 50 percent capacity. About 90 percent of Moe’s employees returned to work and were following local, state and federal safety guidelines, said Grooms, vice president, who worked for Steak n’ Shake and Krystal before joining Quality Fresca. Franchised outposts are in coastal markets (Naples, Fort Myers, Tampa and Jacksonville), plus Gainesville and Tallahassee.

Slaine declined to reveal the extent to which sales volumes had recovered since reopening dining rooms, but said they were “not quite like a QSR with a drive-thru.” In March 2019, Franchise Times reported Moe’s average unit volumes were $1.01 million with four-wall EBITDA, or cash flow, averaging $160,692.

Slaine, though, was eager to describe the complicated acquisition. “Quality Fresca was in a unique situation. Four franchisees, all separate companies, decided they wanted to sell their businesses as a package. There are very few people who could have it done it on the timeline we did,” he said. “It was incredibly difficult to close four deals basically on the same day.”

The sellers’ investment banker had rolled the four entities into one. Slaine begged off revealing the transaction’s valuation. “But I will tell you we ran due diligence on four separate companies, all towards a simultaneous closing date,” he said. “We’ve not only been smart in finding deals but also putting them together and getting them done.”

QRG is backed by private investment firm GenRock Capital. Its investors have also funded the company’s acquisitions of 200 Pizza Hut and 27 Arby’s restaurants since 2017. QRG has also used bank financing to acquire restaurant properties.

I asked Slaine about the group’s growth strategy given that investment horizons must now be stretched. “Our long-term play is, let’s get through this and put pandemic crisis-handling behind us—and then look to grow our footprint and remain a significant player in the Moe’s system.”

Quality Restaurant Group Becomes Largest Moe’s Southwest Grill® Franchisee

Franchised Restaurant Giant Becomes Largest Moe’s Southwest Grill® Franchisee

Quality Fresca, a wholly owned subsidiary of Quality Restaurant Group,
to acquire and evolve 67 Moe’s Southwest Grill locations across four separate acquisitions

ATLANTA, GA – (March 10, 2020)Moe’s Southwest Grill®, an innovative fast-casual restaurant franchise that serves high quality burritos, quesadillas, famous queso and more, announced today the transfer of 67 franchised locations in Florida, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and District of Columbia to Quality Fresca, a new division of Quality Restaurant Group formed to own and operate a best in class Moe’s Southwest Grill franchisee group.

In partnership with Matt Ailey, Founder of GenRock Capital Management, Matt Slaine, CEO of Quality Restaurant Group and Chris Grooms, Vice President of Quality Fresca, the restaurant group plans to roll out the updated brand design for the restaurants in the next 12-18 months. The series of transactions will make Quality Fresca the largest franchisee in the Moe’s Southwest Grill portfolio.

“We believe there is extraordinary growth ahead for the Moe’s Southwest Grill brand and know that our company will be a significant partner as the brand continues to innovate and secure share in a competitive segment,” said Matt Slaine, CEO of Quality Restaurant Group and GenRock Operating Partner. “Matt and I have been fans of Moe’s for a long time and were attracted to the unique brand personality, culture, leadership, vision for the future and unit-level economics.”

Backed by GenRock Capital Management, Quality Restaurant Group is based in North Carolina, employs more than 7,500 people and is the parent company for Quality Huts and Quality Meats. Quality Huts is one of the largest Pizza Hut operators with nearly 200 units across Illinois, Indiana, Maryland and Pennsylvania. Quality Meats is an Arby’s operator which recently acquired 27 Arby’s locations in Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, Montana and South Dakota. Quality Fresca is the newest division for Quality Restaurant Group that will operate the Moe’s Southwest Grill locations added to their portfolio of restaurant brands.

“The Moe’s Southwest Grill brand has been a beloved restaurant brand in the fast casual segment for 20 years and the brand is accelerating our journey to modernize both the in-restaurant and off-premise customer experiences,” said Erik Hess, President, Moe’s Southwest Grill®. “Working together with the passionate and dedicated group of Moe’s franchisees has enhanced the brand strength and adding new franchisees like Quality Restaurant Group will serve as another advantage for the brand in several of our largest markets.”

Moe’s Southwest Grill currently has more than 700 restaurants in 40 states and is part of the FOCUS Brands family of brands, which includes Auntie Anne’s®, Carvel®, Cinnabon®, Jamba®, McAlister’s Deli® and Schlotzsky’s®. Quality Restaurant Group and all franchisees within the Moe’s Southwest Grill system have the ability to use shared services at FOCUS Brands, including marketing, real estate, technology and more, to help them successfully launch and operate their restaurants.

In addition to Quality Restaurant Group, Moe’s Southwest Grill is continuing with its aggressive expansion and is seeking single- and multi-unit operators to join its successful franchise network. Moe’s Southwest Grill is currently targeting new markets across the U.S. For more information about franchise opportunities, call 800-227-8353 or email franchising@moes.com.

About Moe’s Southwest Grill®

Welcome to Moe’s!® Founded in 2000 and based in Atlanta, GA, Moe’s Southwest Grill is a fast-casual restaurant franchise that serves high quality and fresh southwestern food. Moe’s has an extensive variety of menu items to please the entire family – from burritos to specialty items like quesadillas, nachos and stacks. Whether you visit one of our more than 700 franchised locations or have us cater your next event, free chips and salsa come with every order and each restaurant has a salsa bar and serves our famous queso. Check us out online at www.moes.com to find a store near you, and then connect with us on InstagramTwitter  and Facebook.

Quality Restaurant Group

Quality Restaurant Group, LLC is based in North Carolina and was founded in 2017 with a strong focus on developing a world-class multi-branded quick service and fast casual franchising business. The founding leaders have a vision of becoming QUALITY franchisee entrepreneurs that believe in a QUALITY PEOPLE-FIRST culture that drives an unparalleled spirit of customer service for our guests in our restaurants. The company owns and operates 67 Moe’s Southwest Grill restaurants in Florida, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and District of Columbia, nearly 200 Pizza Hut restaurants in Illinois, Indiana, Maryland and Pennsylvania and 27 Arby’s locations in Colorado, Montana, Nebraska, Wyoming and South Dakota. Check out www.qualityrestaurantgroup.com for more information.