WEDNESDAY / MARCH 30, 2016 / 11:00 AM

Franchise Financing 201: Have You Explored All Funding Options?

As recently as two years ago, borrowers for the restaurant segment could expect to be required to make a 50 percent equity injection to obtain a loan for a start-up if they could find an interested lender. Those numbers are much lower now that we are coming out of the financial crisis, but that doesn’t mean it’s ever easy to obtain funding. This panel explores a variety of funding opportunities for franchisors who not only want to expand their footprints, but who also want to spend money on improving their operations.


Michael Morales | CFO | MOOYAH

Michael Morales is the chief financial officer of MOOYAH Burgers, Fries & Shakes where he has been instrumental in refining and improving operations while enhancing the communication between the corporate team and franchisees in the nearly 100 unit system. Michael has served in the role since February 2014. Prior to joining MOOYAH, he served as vice president of finance at True North Advisors. A restaurant industry veteran and graduate of Southern Methodist University, Morales began his career with Steak n Shake and also worked on the accounting staff at Brinker International.

Tim Mullany | CFO | Pie Five Pizza Co.

As CFO of Rave Restaurant Group, Tim Mullany brings financial and strategic leadership to the company as well as a wealth of food industry experience. Prior to joining RAVE, Tim served as the CFO of Restaurants Unlimited, Inc., a company that owns and operates over 20 brands across 11 states including Palomino, Henry’s Tavern, and Kincaid’s, among others. Tim was also CFO of Smashburger and Consumer Capital Partners. He has also served as the CFO of an international retail brokerage and CEO of Mystic Entertainment Company, operating the Blue Turtle Restaurant chain. His other experience includes private equity investing at J.P. Morgan and investment banking at Banc of America Securities. Tim has an MBA from Columbia Business School and a BS from Villanova University.

Michael Nishi | CFO | Wetzel’s Pretzels

Michael Nishi joined Wetzel’s Pretzels as Chief Financial Officer in June 2014. Prior to Wetzel’s Pretzels, Nishi served as CFO for southern California-based restaurant companies including Slater’s 50/50 and Innovative Dining Group (BOA Steakhouse, Sushi Roku). He got his start in the restaurant industry in Tokyo, Japan where he lived for eight years and worked for Global-Dining, a publicly-traded, multi-concept restaurant company. Nishi began his career as a CPA at Deloitte & Touche in Los Angeles where he served Japanese multinational companies in both the audit and tax departments.


Stephen LaMastra| Managing Principal | Monarch Investments Group

Stephen LaMastra is Managing Principal of Monarch Investments Group, where he oversees all aspects of the company and its business. He is also a principal in Monarch’s affiliate company, Crown Holdings Group, LLC. Stephen has over two decades of experience in acquiring, developing, financing and managing real estate assets. He has been involved in real estate as a principal, investor, developer, advisor and corporate executive. Among other successes, he has served as CEO of a $300 million company, president and CEO of a 500-unit multi-concept franchise portfolio company and head of corporate and real estate strategy for a $1 billion multi-channel retail company.