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4 days. Endless opportunities.
6:00am – 6:30am

RLC Running Club

Location: Departure from the Sunset Terrace (outside the Saguaro ballroom)

You just can't beat the beautiful weather and scenery of Arizona in April! Join us for an invigorating morning run around the picturesque JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa and get your day started on the right foot.

7:30am – 6:15pm

Registration & Information Desk

Location: Grand Canyon Ballroom Foyer
Presented By:
McLane Foodservice, Inc
NCR Corporation
PepsiCo Foodservice
Wells Fargo & Company
7:30am – 6:15pm

RLC Charity Desk

Location: Grand Canyon Ballroom Foyer

Tickets will be available for the silent auction and grand-prize drawing, benefiting the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation’s ProStart program, a nationwide, two-year high school program that reaches nearly 140,000 students in more than 1,800 high schools across 50 states, Guam and the Department of Defense Education Activity schools in Europe and the Pacific. ProStart provides real-life experience opportunities and builds practical skills and a foundation that will last a lifetime. Make your donation today!

Presented By:
Dine Brands Global, Inc.
Ecolab
McLane Foodservice, Inc
PepsiCo Foodservice
7:30am – 8:30am

Networking Breakfast

Location: RLC Product Gallery
8:00am – 8:45am

Innovation Forums

Option 1: "Cubicles Are For Squares" - Recruiting Next Gen
Location: Sonoran G

The restaurant and foodservice industry needs to attract 650,000 16 – 24 year olds over the next 10 years. Learn about a new, bold and innovative marketing campaign that will inspire this important segment to ditch the “cube farm” and choose restaurants for their next job or career.  

Speakers:

Executive Vice President
National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation

Presented By:
McLane Foodservice, Inc
Option 2: The Connected Restaurant: Impact of IoT on Your Customer Experience
Location: Sonoran JK

With the number of IP enabled devices expected to reach 20 billion in 2020, the Internet of Things (IoT) is having a big impact on the restaurant industry and your front line and IT staff – from device management to data analytics to hyper-personalization of the consumer experience.  Join us as we discuss how to connect the physical with the digital and turn the complexities of managing an IoT-enabled restaurant into opportunities to increase operational efficiencies, improve uptime and delight your customers.

 

This session will be co-presented by Venkat Ramamurthy, Vice President and General Manager of NCR Managed Services and Don Zimmerman, Vice President of Digital-First Restaurant Product Management

Speakers:

Vice President and General Manager of Managed Services Product Management
NCR

Vice President of Product Management for Digital-first Restaurants
NCR

Presented By:
NCR Corporation
Option 3: The Digital Journey 
Location:  Sonoran B

The foodservice landscape has changed. The habits of Gen Z to Boomer consumers are shifting. Understanding how the Digital Journey differs from an in-restaurant experience is critical in unlocking the opportunity or getting left behind.   Additionally, we are flooded with digital tools creating the need to experiment. We will take you through the moments where consumer purchase incidence is most likely to be influenced and preview PepsiCo’s newest capability to respond to the evolving landscape. 

Speakers:

CMO
PepsiCo Foodservice

Presented By:
PepsiCo Foodservice
Option 4: Market Intelligence - Global Restaurant M&A Dynamics - What do Industry Leaders do Next?
Location: Sonoran C

The deal-making boom is not likely to slow down. Involving national chains, emerging brands or multi-concept operators, the M&A action is likely to come your way. Hear from Wells Fargo’s Investment Banking leader on deal activity and what operators need to know to attract the right partner and, perhaps most importantly, manage a successful company after close.  On the agenda:  driving multiples, the importance of strategic investment, why top talent and company culture matter, and completing a successful deal that drives growth and leads to better performance.

Speakers:

Managing Director and Head of Retail Investment Banking
Wells Fargo Securities

Presented By:
Wells Fargo & Company
Option 5: CMO Confidential: The new science driving incremental diners
Location: Sonoran E

Restaurant marketing has evolved from the ‘spray and pray’ tactic of TV/radio/billboard to the ability to precisely measure the impact of advertising on driving incremental diners. We’ll share how forward-thinking marketers are using this new capability to drive increases in diners and sales.

Speakers:

Enterprise Marketing Manager
Yelp

Senior Director, Enterprise Marketing
Yelp

Presented By:
Yelp
Option 6: Best Practices in Operator-Supplier Collaborative Innovation
Location: Sonoran D

Is there a better way to foster great innovation between suppliers and operators?  Is there a better way to tap into the value of your key suppliers?  Yes, there is!  And collaboration is the key.

 

S&D Coffee & Tea will outline an exciting new industry best practice called “Foodservice Collaborative Innovation”.  A panel of operators will then discuss how they worked collaboratively with S&D to develop more impactful and differentiating innovation. 

Speakers:

VP – Marketing
S&D Coffee & Tea

Partner
Kinetic12

Presented By:
S&D Coffee & Tea
Option 7: Fat Bottomed Lines
Location: Sonoran H

Fat Bottom Lines make the restaurant world go round!  But achieving bottom-line growth isn’t all about growing revenue - cutting costs makes long-lasting impacts on an operation’s net income. Join our panel of operators as we debate what cost-saving function has the biggest impact on overall profit. Our panel of specialists will ‘compete’ for the title of Biggest Bottom Line Bang for the Buck.

Speakers:

Chief Financial Officer
Snooze

Managing Partner
Hargett Hunter Capital Partners

President
Consolidated Concepts

Operations Specialist & CEO
Restaurant Partners Procurement

CEO
PINCHO

Presented By:
Consolidated Concepts
Option 8: Controlling Labor Costs and Reducing Labor Liability in 2019
Location: Sonoran F

Learn the top techniques for controlling labor costs and reducing labor liability that every operator must know in 2019.  The largest and most successful chains in the world are already putting into place the tools and processes they need to manage labor.  When it comes to managing labor - time is money!

Speakers:

Founder and CEO
Altametrics

Presented By:
Altametrics
Option 9: Customer Engagement in the Era of Hyper-Personalization - The link between data and revenue, and how to maximize both.
Location: Sonoran G

Consumers today expect brands to give them the kind of personalized experiences they get from big brands like Amazon, Zappos, Netflix and Dominos, who added about 9% on average domestic same-store revenue growth from 2015-2018 through their data-driven one-to-one marketing. While smaller brands aspire to deliver this level of personalization, few, if any, have been capable. Why? It all comes down to data. Join us to learn why personalized customer engagement is crucial to the success of your restaurant over the next decade, and how to use data to better engage your customers and drive revenue. 

Speakers:

Executive Vice President, Restaurants, Bars and Food Concepts
Tommy Bahama

Founder & CEO
Thanx

Chief Executive Officer
5 Napkin Burger

Executive Vice-President Operations
Syufy Enterprises

Chief Operations Officer
RBM Restaurants

Presented By:
Thanx
Option 10: A Sustainable Approach to the Menu
Location: Sonoran I
  • This Innovation Forum will address the emerging importance of Sustainability including Clean Menus, Natural Ingredients and Green initiatives in the restaurant industry.
  • Rich Shank from Technomic will present proprietary research on the importance of Sustainability and Clean Menus to your consumers.
  • The operator panel will provide their perspective on:
    • Overall Sustainability Strategies and how they relate to your consumer.
    • Issues, opportunities, challenges and rewards of implementing a Sustainability and Clean Menu strategy.
    • How the operator engaged with and partnered with their suppliers to support their Sustainability and Clean Label initiatives.
    • How to communicate (or choose not communicate, if that’s the case) the improved Sustainability and Clean Label position to consumers.
Speakers:

Chief Nutritionist
McDonald's USA, LLC

Director of Consumer Insights
Technomic

National Foodservice Category Business Development, Natural Colors Division
Chr. Hansen

President & COO
Orange Leaf

Director, U.S. Quality Systems, U.S. Supply Chain Management
McDonald’s USA, LLC

Presented By:
Chr. Hansen
9:00am – 11:15am

General Session

Location: Grand Saguaro Ballroom
Wells Fargo and Technomic "State of the Industry"

Wells Fargo and Technomic will combine resources to profile the current environment facing the industry with a look towards future expectations. Tim Quinlan will address the U.S. economy and financial markets and provide views as to where it's going, based on past and current conditions in today’s marketplace using Wells Fargo leading economic and financial analysis. Next, Technomic will have an exclusive look at the most trusted global market foodservice data, presented by Patrick Noone and Joe Pawlak. They will reveal the latest industry sales data and over-arching trends that span the restaurant space and that are fueling industry growth. This session will review the top performers in the annual Technomic Top 1,500 chain restaurant brands; offer exclusive data on a snapshot of monthly sales performance for the top 200 chains utilizing Transaction Insights; and feature consumer and menu-based insights that are driving success for industry growth and leading players. In a bonus for RLC attendees, Wells Fargo will make the SOI study available to all!

Speakers:

Executive Vice President
Technomic

Managing Principal
Technomic

Director, Senior Economist
Wells Fargo Securities, LLC, Wells Fargo & Company

Presented By:
Wells Fargo & Company
2019 Restaurant Leader of the Year

Greg Creed jokes that’s he just your typical Australian selling Mexican, Italian and down-home Southern food to Americans.  Under Creed’s direction, Yum! Brands—the world’s largest restaurant company—has rejuvenated KFC and Pizza Hut while continuing to extend Taco Bell’s daunting lead in the quick-service Mexican market. Consumers have embraced the brands because of their constant stream of head-turning new products and off-beat marketing. Investors see one of the best-performing and attractive companies in the business.  It’s easy to understand why he was chosen by the editors of Restaurant Business as the 2019 Restaurant Leader of the Year.  Following the Award presentation, Creed will share some of the how’s along with a glimpse of what’s next in a sit-down with RB’s Peter Romeo.

Speakers:

CEO
Yum! Brands

President, Global Foodservice
PepsiCo, Inc.

Presented By:
PepsiCo Foodservice
Women With Impact – Insights and Solutions

The dynamics of the rapidly changing work environment requires a deeper level of thinking. Executives must examine all perspectives, insights and ideas to effectively respond. Join an energizing conversation on the Impact of women and the unique solutions they bring. 

Speakers:

President & CEO
Women's Foodservice Forum

CEO & Chairperson
Galardi Group, Inc. (Wienerschnitzel)

Chief Financial Officer
Texas Roadhouse

Senior Vice President - Strategy & Insights
Domino's Pizza, Inc.

President/CEO
PhaseNext Hospitality

11:15am – 12:30pm

Networking Lunch

Location: Ballroom Lawn
11:15am – 12:30pm

Lunch & Learn Session: How to Deliver High-Impact Results with a Frictionless Guest Experience

Location: Desert 3

Most restaurant CEOs list “frictionless guest experience” as one of their top five initiatives for 2019. In this session, you’ll hear the latest trends in frictionless guest experiences, how brands are using guest data to boost sales, and how data-rich catering programs add to top-line results. Sound integrations and focused strategies make the guest experience a results driver. You’ll hear real-life case stories from the industry’s leading brands. Enjoy lunch with these high-energy restaurant experts and walk away with new sales growth ideas you can implement this year. 

Presented By:
Paytronix
12:30pm – 1:15pm

Innovation Forums

Option 1: What Gen Z is Eating and Drinking
Location: Sonoran E

Generation Z is made up of teenagers and young adults that are increasingly dependent on foodservice. This session will explore what this next consumer generation is eating and drinking, and where, when and how they are consuming it. We’ll help you understand how this generation differs from previous generations, and what it means for your segment.

Speakers:

Principal
Technomic

VP Beverage Marketing
Nestle Professional USA

Presented By:
Nestlé Professional
Option 2: Driving Sales Growth: Customer Knowledge; CRM; Unified Data!
Location:  Sonoran JK

Today’s marketer faces ever more effective but specialized tools (loyalty, email, online ordering, mobile, catering…) without having easy access to a unified view of the customer and a unified execution strategy to drive sales growth.   In this session, Stephen Farr Jones will illustrate how to use your data to understand WHO your best customers are to drive NEW CUSTOMER traffic and increase spending of EXISTING CUSTOMERS with a more unified data approach.  ADMM will also cover how to segment existing and potential customer bases around your locations to unlock the varying potential lifetime value within each differing segment.

Speakers:

President
ADM Marketing

Presented By:
ADM Marketing
Option 3: Sharpen your Strategy to Win at Third-Party Delivery
Location: Sonoran F

Few things are affecting the restaurant industry quite like third-party delivery—and it only continues to gain traction. Join this follow-up session from last year’s Innovation Forum where we’ll provide new + exclusive research on evolving customer behaviors, the financial impact of third-party delivery, and how to establish a winning strategy.

Speakers:

Chief Sales Officer
Service Management Group (SMG)

Presented By:
Service Management Group
Option 4: Empowering Franchisees to Deliver Digitally Enabled Guest Convenience
Location: Sonoran A

As one of the leading fast-casual restaurants in the US, Tropical Smoothie Cafe is known for its better-for-you food and smoothies with a tropical twist at more than 730 locations nationwide. The company’s rapid growth, coupled with changing customer expectations for convenience and value, required a complete reimagining of the way it supported its franchisee community. Join this session to learn how Tropical Smoothie Cafe has successfully leveraged digital technology to empower their large – and rapidly growing – franchisee community in their mission to deliver convenient, healthy food options to their customers. 

Speakers:

Vice President, Retail
Capgemini

CEO
Tropical Smoothie Cafe, LLC

Presented By:
Capgemini
Option 5: Fight Fire with Fire: Heated Debate w/ Industry Heavy Hitters
Location: Sonoran G

The gloves are coming off and the nerd speak and buzz words will be left at the door. In a spirited debate about the right and wrong answers to the challenges facing today’s full service operators—Mike Vichich asks four brand leaders why they’re winning the battle for guests and how they’re smoking the competition on every level (from SSS to the customer experience). Panelists include: Scott Lawton (bartaco), Chris Simms (Lazy Dog), Bill Long (Snooze) and Lauren Bailey (Upward Projects)

Speakers:

Co-founder & CEO
Upward Projects

Co-founder
bartaco

Chief Financial Officer
Snooze

Chief Executive Officer and Founder
The Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar

Co-founder and CEO
Wisely

Presented By:
Wisely
Option 6: The Power of Predictability 
Location: Sonoran D

Predictability is the key to your business’ success. The more accurate your forecast, the better your plans can be executed, giving you the opportunity to be more profitable. Weekly averages or aggregations of data disguise the real picture and hide the opportunities. Look under the surface, and a different picture emerges. Join Fourth to understand Weighted Mean Absolute Percentage Error (WMAPE) and how we can shine a light on hidden areas of improvement for your unique business.

Speakers:

Director of Labor Productivity
Fourth

Sales Director
Fourth

Head of Workforce Management Technology
Fourth

Presented By:
Fourth
Option 7: Make Your Data Work for You
Location: Sonoran B

A new class of cloud-enabled, action-based engagement tools are available to understand store performance to make data-driven decisions to drive top line growth.

 

In this session, attendees will learn how these tools will answer the following questions:

 

● How does my performance compare across various sales channels?

 

● What are my customers saying about me on social media?

 

● How do I compare to my competitors?

 

● How can I engage my customers and drive measurable results? 

Speakers:

VP Analytics & Customer Engagement
Xenial

Presented By:
Xenial
Option 8: Gen Y + Z’s Mobile Solutions To Improve Profitability
Location: Sonoran C

Gen Y and Gen Z employees expect to use the latest tech tools on the job, with interfaces that mirror the ones they use at home, and mobile strategies to engage them in the workplace are crucial. These employees also desire to work for a purpose, and to see how their contributions impact the business. Facing increased costs to serve, low unemployment rates, high turnover, training limitations, and food safety crises, leading restaurants are embracing mobile solutions that are helping improve retention, add labor efficiencies and reduce risk. In fast-paced environments where training is at a premium, mobilizing operational standards and providing guidance in-app has transformed restaurants’ ability to drive standards. Through gamification and creating cultures that reward solid food safety practices, top restaurants have placed the power to wow customers firmly in employees’ hands. Learn how Gen Y co-founder, Joey Alfano, and his team who were awarded CG Technology’s 2019 Editor’s Pick for software, think about how tomorrow’s workforce works. They’ll share best practices from Compass Group USA, Panera, and Dairy Queen who are successfully mobilizing their workforces and:

  • Increasing operational efficiencies
  • Building cultures of food safety
  • Improving quality and consistency
  • Identifying and preventing risks
  • Managing crises
  • Driving innovation & new product launches
Speakers:

Co-Founder & CPO
GoSpotCheck

Enterprise Sales Manager
GoSpotCheck

Presented By:
GoSpotCheck
Option 9: Boosting Revenue with Catering
Location: Sonoran H

The U.S. catering market is huge — Technomic puts it at $61.5 billion. Are you getting your share? In this session, ezCater will be joined by a panel of restaurant industry leaders who will share insights and strategies on how they’ve grown their brand’s catering business.

Speakers:

Chief Marketing Officer
ezCater

VP, Digital and Marketing Technology
Tropical Smoothie Cafe LLC

Chief Sales and Marketing Officer
Earl Enterprises

Director of Off Premise Business Development
Corner Bakery Café

Operating Partner, Off-Premises Sales
Act III Holdings

Presented By:
ezCater
Option 10: Guest Entertainment-Cost or Revenue Driver?
Location: Sonoran I

Panel discussion with restaurant operators, focused on the importance on entertainment solutions as part of the overall guest experience. Brief introduction from Technomic, followed by roundtable discussion on the challenges and opportunities of deploying and managing entertainment services to increase customer traffic, sales and loyalty.

Speakers:

Director-DIRECTV National Accounts, ATT
DIRECTV/AT&T

Presented By:
DIRECTV/AT&T
1:30pm – 3:00pm

General Session

Location: Grand Saguaro Ballroom
“Driving Tech Before It Runs You Over”

From a new delivery app to an online ordering platform or POS upgrade, there is a seemingly constant barrage of new technology – and new tech partners – designed to help consumers connect with restaurants. If business owners are not equipped to manage these fast-paced and even faster changing trends, it could place undue strain on them. At the same time, restaurants are contending with exciting, evolving trends within the off-premise space that could benefit both operators and their partners, as delivery continues to mature. Instead of the unsightly, confusing, hard-to-manage tangle of devices that’s become known as tablet hell, for example, developments are starting to roll out to create efficiencies and ease operations.

 

In this session, attendees will first hear from Melissa Wilson, Technomic principal, about the state of off-premise, then learn why a tech roadmap and digital strategy to ordering and off-premise is now more critical to their business success, whether or not they partner with third-party marketplaces. Consumers are continually increasing their digital activity, especially around off-premise, and an integrated plan can have a positive impact on your brand, your operations and your relationships with customers.

Speakers:

Principal
Technomic

Executive Editor, Restaurant Business
Winsight, LLC

CEO
Chowly

CIO
FOCUS Brands

Presented By:
Chowly
Breaking Through: My Journey to Becoming the First Female NFL Official

Sarah Thomas is a woman of many firsts – she was the first female official to ever work a major college football game, the first woman to officiate a bowl game, and the first to officiate in a Big Ten stadium. She is also the first permanent female NFL official and made post-season history during the Patriots/Chargers 2019 AFC Divisional championship by being the first woman to officiate a playoff game. Now she’s sharing essential leadership lessons from her journey to the top of a male-dominated industry and vital insights on shattering the glass ceiling in the world of professional sports that can be applied to any field or industry. As an exemplar of what’s possible if you believe, Sarah brings audiences takeaways on breaking through in your own career, from staying focused under pressure and creating change to managing work-life balance and being the best you can be. 

Speakers:

First Female NFL Official

3:00pm – 4:30pm

RLC Product Gallery

Location: Grand Canyon Ballroom & Foyer

With almost 200 suppliers on display, you're sure to find all the industry-shapers within the RLC Product Gallery. It's all about the connections you make and the hands you'll shake here, where suppliers and operators gather to uncover the latest solutions, sample new products and even close deals. 

Presented By:
McLane Foodservice, Inc
3:00pm – 4:30pm

Happy Hour

Location: RLC Product Gallery

It's time for everyone's favorite hour … happy hour! Take a well-deserved break, and mix and mingle among the displays in the Restaurant Product Gallery.

4:45pm – 6:15pm

General Session

Location: Grand Saguaro Ballroom
Transforming Digital-First Interactions with AI

Artificial intelligence is rapidly shifting how businesses transform and take a digital-first approach to building unique consumer and employee experiences. The advancement of leading AI technologies such as computer vision, conversational commerce and augmented intelligence is enabling a greater understanding of consumer behavior and more powerful decisions on the front-line. 

 

Restaurants have an opportunity to leverage AI to meet the growing expectations of consumers who are hungry for more convenience and personalization, and management and restaurant staff who are seeking ways to more effectively achieve their business objectives.

 

NCR executive, Dirk Izzo, will discuss the latest technology trends and present use case scenarios for how restaurant operators can leverage AI to drive new growth, capture the loyalty of consumers and achieve greater efficiency.

Speakers:

Senior Vice President, Industry Solutions Group
NCR Corporation

Presented By:
NCR Corporation
A Passion for Leadership

The only officer in the history of the CIA to rise from entry-level employee to director, Dr. Gates has consistently been a successful leader of change throughout an exceptional career. In this candid, inspiring presentation based on his book A Passion for Leadership, Dr. Gates draws on years of dedicated leadership at the CIA, Texas A&M University and the Department of Defense to offer wisdom and encouragement to leaders on how to successfully implement change and transform their organizations. In a time of change, companies have to change all the time to be competitive. How do you recognize and preserve the tradition and culture that made a company great, and determine what is in the way? Assessing the failures of big institutions, Dr. Gates offers innovative and practical advice, sharing personal anecdotes and experiences as most pertinent to the RLC audience. 

Speakers:

Secretary of Defense (2006-2011) | New York Times Best-Selling Author

Presented By:
McLane Foodservice, Inc
5:00pm – 10:00pm

Sponsor Tear-Down

Location: Grand Canyon Ballroom & Foyer
6:15pm – 8:30pm

Dinner on Your Own

Be sure to check the Winsight Events app for JW Marriott and local restaurant suggestions!

8:30pm – 10:30pm

RLC After Dark

For the perfect “nightcap” following a busy day of networking, learning and deal-making, meet friends and colleagues on the gorgeous patio at Twenty6. Light refreshments and specialty beverages will complete the festivities - along with you!  

Presented By:
ezCater
100+Speakers
2kAttendees

Restaurant Leadership News

The longtime marketer was cited for the innovation and boldness he has fostered at Taco Bell, KFC and Pizza Hut