Global Restaurant Investment Forum

25-27 February 2019 – NH Collection Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky, Amsterdam


25-27 February 2019 – Amsterdam

2018 Programme

Day Three - Wednesday 14 March

← At-a-glance

08:45 - 09:15


09:00 - 10:00

Round Table Sessions

Join us for round table ‘brainstorming sessions’ with your fellow attendees. These sessions allow you to meet and share ideas ahead of the start of conference sessions. A great ice-breaker and an excellent way to gain industry knowledge. Network, demonstrate your expertise to potential partners and gain insight from industry leaders in an intimate setting. Each table will be hosted by an industry expert. During the session you will have the chance move tables once to discuss industry issues from the following round tables:

TOPIC 1: “How-to”: Expansion
A look at the different business models for expansion - Franchising, management agreements, joint ventures... How do you know what’s right for your business? Evaluating strategic growth opportunities both regionally and beyond.

Mathieu Fabre-Magnan – Partner, Dentons

Nick Schapira – International Chief Operating Officer, Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group

TOPICS 2: Talent Retention
A discussion on the shortage of qualified staff globally in the F&B Industry. Where will talent come from? How to foster talent and get them proud of the brand to promote the brand

Emma Banks – General Manager, Jumeirah Restaurant Group

Gert Kopera – Executive Vice President of Global Restaurants, Hakkasan Group

TOPIC 3: Operational Costs
Maximising your bottom-line against increasing operational costs. Effectively developing budgets and understanding the costs of operating an F&B venue

Soumobroto Ganguly – Deputy Managing Director, Genesis Group Nigeria

Aku Patel – Managing Director, Paperchase Accountancy Ltd

TOPIC 4: Intellectual Property
How do you go about protecting your IP at home and in other markets? What happens if someone copies your concept and logo? 

Isabelle Leroux – Senior Counsel, Dentons

TOPIC 5: Technology, Data and Creating Loyalty
How can data impact customer loyalty in the F&B space?

Karl Atiyeh – Co-founder and Chief Operating Officer, serVme

TOPIC 6: The Economics of Design

Spero Panagakis – Chief Operating Officer, PSBars & Co-owner, BB Social Dining

Alexander Stumpf – Executive Chef & Co-owner, BB Social Dining

Shabnum Stumpf – Chief Executive Officer, PSBars & Co-owner, BB Social Dining

10:00 - 10:15

Coffee Break



Hosted by:

Heleri Rande – F&B Strategist & Consulting Editor, SUPPER

10:15 - 10:30

Restaurant of the Future

A presentation of the key trends that will redefine the restaurant sector over the coming 5 years, developed by a group of British restaurant industry leaders & academics.

James Hacon – Managing Director, THINK Hospitality

10:30 - 10:50

Thinking out of the Box: Are Insects the New Sushi?

Hear from Hult Prize winner Mohammed Ashour on his plans for the future of insect consumption on a global scale. As the cleanest and most efficient form of animal proteine, are insects the “next big thing” when it comes to solutions to food security and sustainable farming? What are his company’s strategies for “normalizing” the consumption of insects in the western world?

Mohammed Ashour – Co-Founder and CEO, Aspire Food Group

10:50 - 11:30

How is Technology Transforming the Restaurant Industry?

Looking Beyond Food Tech

A look at the future of convenience and experience. What is happening next? Harnessing the power of technology to own your customer.

Ian Ohan – Founder & CEO , Freedom Pizza

The Future Is Now - How AI-based Technology can be Leveraged in the Industry

An in-depth look of how innovation is changing the traditional restaurant business model and how technology that is available today can be an enabler for improving profitability and making sure restaurants are future-ready.

Benjamin Calleja – CEO, Livit Design

11:30 - 11:45

Food Waste: What can be done?

With pressure coming from both bottom-line and consumers to reduce food waste, how can restaurateurs address this issue in the F&B industry? An in-depth look at key facts and figures around food waste and what tools can be implemented to tackle this growing problem

Anastasia Hofmann – Co-founder, KITRO

Naomi MacKenzie – Co-founder, KITRO

11:45 - 12:25

The Evolution of Marketing for Restaurants

Strategic marketing builds businesses far beyond promotions and advertising. This session will focus on building a brand, developing a customer focused proposition, gaining buy-in from your team through better engagement tactics and building company value through external communications.

James Hacon – Managing Director, THINK Hospitality

In conversation with:

Lisa Johnson – Marketing Director - Franchising & Business Development, Casual Dining Group

Anupama Parekh – Head of Marketing at Wakira Investments

Elmar Pichorner – Partner, Atelier EPJ

12:25 - 12:45

Market Spotlight: Asia

Rohit Sachdev – Managing Director, Soho Hospitality

12:45 - 13:00

Curating Talent & Company Culture

How to develop your company culture and employee engagement to ensure a productive, efficient and loyal workforce.

Monique Borst – Consultant, Monique Borst Ltd

13:00 - 14:00




Hosted by:

James Hacon – Managing Director, THINK Hospitality

14:00 - 14:40

Doing the Deal

What are investors looking for conceptually and returns-wise from an investment or franchise? How would they go about negotiating a sale? Once the deal is done, how do they add value to the investment?

Dogan Eymirlioglu – Partner, Dentons

In conversation with:

Mohamed El-Masri – Head of Corporate Finance, Ento Capital Management Ltd.

Paul Hemming – Senior Advisor, Alix Partners

Michael Ingemann – Executive Chairman, Claus Meyer Holding; Director, Melting Pot Foundation

Kieran Mallon – General Manager – F&B, Al Futtaim Retail

David Singleton – Area Vice President EMEA/South Asia, Franchise Operations & Development, Hard Rock Café

14:40 - 15:00

Investor success story

An in-depth case study of an investment gone right. What were the keys to success?

Martin Sherwood – Partner, Enterprise Investment Partners

15:00 - 15:15

Expo 2020: Where are the opportunities for the F&B industry, particularly SMEs to benefit from the event?

Darren Tse – Head of Catering and Cleaning & Waste Management, ‎Expo 2020 Dubai

15:15 - 16:00

The GRIF Deal Den

A panel of expert judges evaluate the attractiveness of a selection of concepts and projects for investment.

Hosted by:

Sarah-Jane Grant – Director, LXA


Paul Campbell – Founder , Hill Capital Partners

Sami Daud – Managing Director, Daud Group

Martin Sherwood – Partner, Enterprise Investment Partners


Ajay Kenth – Founder, Zindiya Streatery and Bar

Ana Martinez – Founder, YOUtopia

Imad Khairallah – Founder, Kitchen Confidential

Benjamin Mouflard – Co-founder & CEO, ChatFood

Giuseppe Atzeri – Managing Director, VT Capital Ltd - Niu Restaurant Project

16:00 -

GRIF 2018 Closing Remarks

James Hacon – Managing Director, THINK Hospitality

Jennifer Pettinger-Haines – Managing Director Middle East , Bench Events