Press Releases

11 Jan 2016

Investment, Franchising and Internationalizing high on the agenda for the Global Restaurant Investment Forum

Bench Events, the organiser of The Global Restaurant Investment Forum (GRIF), the premier conference focused on restaurant investment, taking place on 14-16 March at The Address Dubai Mall, has unveiled a stimulating and inspiring programme with a high calibre speaker line-up.

GRIF has firmly set its place in the global calendar, now in its 3rd year the event is fast becoming a must attend event for the industry.  Jonathan Worsley, Chairman, Bench Events, said: “GRIF provides a unique platform which brings together key stakeholders in the restaurant investment community together in one place to share best practice, innovation, knowledge and address current issues that face the sector.”  The three-day conference will be powered by Michelin bring their experience of the industry with Managing Director, Michael Ellis of Michelin Restaurant & Hotel Guides co-chairing the event.

The GRIF programme has been derived through the expert knowledge of its Advisory Board Members.  The forum will start with a culinary tour around Dubai so attendees can view real estate options in the local market, see what's currently on the menu and assess the pipeline.   Confirmed hosts to date include: Solutions Leisure, Emaar Hospitality Group and Hilton Worldwide.  

The forum itself will begin by looking at what eating trends are shaping the industry and how millennials are changing the models and concepts of the future.  The programme then discusses how to create a diverse restaurant portfolio from Michelin Star to pop up with Pascal Aussignac, Executive Chef & Co-Owner, Gascon Connection who will also be having a residency at the Burj Al Arab with the Jumeirah Group during the event.

The agenda then delves deeper into industry issues including franchising with Sami Daud, Founder, Gourmet Gulf giving his advice to future entrepreneurs on how to avoid unfair franchise and license agreements; Internationalising your brand with Adam Bel Hadj, Chief Executive Officer, COYA Restaurants; Daniel del Olmo, President, International, DineEquity Inc and Gert Kopera, Chief Operating Officer, D.Ream who will discuss how you can make your concept palatable internationally, taking into consideration cultural, societal and geo-political differences. 

Day Two opens with the investor perspective and what they look for when they invest in F&B.  Eric Bellquist, Partner, Hutton Collins Partners LLP and Nick Peel, Chief Executive Officer, Marka PJSC will share what stage of the cycle the market is at currently and where the opportunities are.  The conference day ends with an enthralling Deal Den where a panel of expert judges evaluate the attractiveness of a selection of real concepts and projects for investment.  

Concluding the event sees the launch of the inaugural Global Restaurant Awards which have been created to recognize the businesses behind the restaurants and restaurant brands.  This exclusive award ceremony will take place at the Burj Al Arab and is being hosted by Jumeirah Group. 

Registration is now open for the Global Restaurant Investment Forum secure your place now 

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