Recent Press

Savory Fund invests $20M in Hash Kitchen breakfast-brunch concept

November 10, 2021
Investment company Savory Fund has acquired a $20 million stake in the five-unit breakfast-brunch concept Hash Kitchen of Scottsdale, Ariz., the companies announced Wednesday. Andrew Smith, a general manager the Lehi, Utah-based restaurant fund, said Savory, similar to its recent investment in Pincho, would retain the founding Maggiore Group to manage the five-unit Hash Kitchen. […]

$200 Million Savory Fund Invests in Burger and Kebab Concept, Pincho

September 16, 2021
Savory Fund announced today that it has invested in the popular burger and kebab concept, Pincho. The Miami-based fast-casual chain is the latest brand to attract growth capital from Mercato Partners’ $200 million Savory Fund, which was created to back promising emerging restaurant concepts. Founded in 2010 by serial entrepreneur Otto Othman, Pincho’s Latin-inspired menu features burgers, kebabs, salads, […]

2021 Restaurantology Conference to Be Held in Salt Lake City in September

September 9, 2021
More than 350 restaurant founders and leadership teams will gather in Salt Lake City next month to learn the critical steps necessary to evolve from promising emerging concepts to powerhouse brands. Hosted by the Savory Fund, the 2021 Restaurantology Conference is scheduled for Sept. 28 at the University of Utah’s Rice Eccles Stadium in Salt […]

Mercato’s Andrew Smith: Now is a “Golden Age” for Restaurants

July 16, 2021
The restaurant sector was one of the hardest hit during the pandemic, but the industry is rebounding rapidly, as consumers embrace going out again. Mercato Partners is jumping at the opportunity. The private equity fund, headquartered in Cottonwood Heights, Utah, near Salt Lake City, raised $100 million for its Savory Fund in October 2020, and […]

Former Garbanzo CEO James Park joins Mercato Partners’ Savory Funds as an operating partner

June 22, 2021
Mercato Partners has named James Park its first operating partner, with responsibility for helping to identify restaurant brands for the private equity firm to acquire and help grow. “He’s a very intriguing individual, smart as a whip, really an enjoyable human being,” Mercato managing partner Andrew Smith said of Park, adding that Park’s approach and […]

Mercato Partners Bets on Post-Pandemic Restaurant Rebound With New $100 Million Fund

June 2, 2021
Armed with a new $100 million fund, Mercato Partners is again looking to back promising restaurant concepts as more cities and towns across the U.S. cautiously set aside coronavirus restrictions. The Utah-based private-equity firm has raised Savory Fund II to build a portfolio of six or seven small, but fast-growing restaurant brands that it can […]

Emerging Detroit-Style Pizza Brand Set to Rocket Out of Austin

April 22, 2021
Via 313 Pizzeria to more than double in size in 2021 serving genuine Detroit-style pizza. It’s wowed pizza fans in its home town, carved out a slice of the pizza category with a distinct and delicious product, and scored a coveted “Pizzeria of the Year” honor. Now Via 313 Pizzeria is aiming to take its […]

TikTok is obsessed with a Utah-based fast food chain and its ‘dirty soda’ drinks — here’s why

January 26, 2021 - Posted via Yahoo News
If you haven’t visited a Swig before, it’s probably because you don’t live in Utah. Or, it’s because you haven’t been on TikTok lately. The Utah-based fast food chain is currently going viral on the app, with users driving from miles away — and sometimes waiting in incredibly long lines — to visit it. So what is it that’s […]

Savory Names Shauna Smith as CEO

November 23, 2020
Shauna Smith brings more than 10 years worth of executive management experience in the food and beverage industry. Savory Management Group announced Shauna Smith’s promotion to chief executive officer. Smith previously served as president and will continue to utilize her deep background and expertise to grow Savory’s portfolio of thriving restaurant brands. The unique, $100 […]

Advice for Restaurant Owners During and After COVID-19

November 9, 2020
There’s no question that the restaurant industry has been one of the business sectors hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, with dire predictions from experts about the percentage – possibly as high as 60 percent, according to Yelp’s 2020 Economic Impact Report – of establishments that may not survive. That said, restaurant owners are also […]

The Crack Shack to reach up to 50 locations with Savory investment

November 4, 2020
After opening the first The Crack Shack to overwhelming success in San Diego, founder Mike Rosen began expanding the modern fried chicken concept to new markets. But Rosen realized the growing pains of building restaurants to scale. Now, those details are in the hands of Savory. The $90 million growth fund, created earlier this year, […]

$100 Million Fund Savory Invests in Via 313 to Fuel Growth

October 13, 2020
Savory Tuesday announced its investment in Via 313, an award-winning restaurant concept specializing in Detroit-style pizza based in Austin, Texas. Together, Savory and Via 313 will look to further grow the highly touted brand into new locations. This is the second investment in the past month for Savory (Crack Shack was the first). The inaugural […]

Crack Shack investor Savory adds Detroit-style pizza restaurant Via 313 to portfolio

October 13, 2020
The growing pizzeria concept from Austin, Texas will add more than a dozen new units over the next 24 months with Savory investment While living in Texas, Brandon and Zane Hunt yearned for pizza that reminded them of their Detroit upbringing. So the two brothers launched Via 313 in a trailer in Austin, Texas nine years […]

How Britain’s Restaurant Crisis Can Be Eased by Private Equity

July 29, 2020 - Posted via Bloomberg
As of today, restaurants in England can reopen. While that could herald a rush of customers, the date didn’t come soon enough for some — a swathe of establishments have closed permanently. With Covid-19 still spreading and the outlook bleak, restaurants will need cash to survive the bad times. They’ll also need to adjust their […]

Scaling 101 for Restaurants: The Must-Have Ingredients

July 15, 2020 - Posted via QSR Magazine
In every good dish of food there are key flavors and ingredients that make it consistently and repeatedly delicious. Finding the right balance and combination of sweet, sour, salty, and bitter will work every single time, for every dish. The same is true with scaling a restaurant concept from one or two locations to 20 […]

Mercato Partners Forms $90 Million Fund for Restaurant Concepts

June 11, 2020 - Posted via Wall Street Journal
Growth investment firm Mercato Partners is whetting its appetite for restaurant deals with a new $90 million fund formed in partnership with veteran sector investor Andrew K. Smith.  The new Savory Fund I will provide capital to help fill what Mr. Smith, a managing director, says has been a dearth of institutional support for emerging […]

Mercato Partners just launched Savory, a $90 million fund focused on fueling fast-casual restaurant concepts

June 11, 2020 - Posted via TechCrunch
Mercato Partners,  a 13-year-old, Salt Lake City, Utah-based investment firm that oversees a growth fund, a secondary investment fund and a venture fund, has launched yet another fund — this one a $90 million vehicle that the firm says will be used to invest in restaurant concepts that are gaining traction. Its timing is interesting, given […]

Mercato Partners Closes $90M Savory Fund to Develop Emerging Restaurants

June 4, 2020 - Posted via QSR Magazine
Savory fills a noticeable void in the food and beverage industry by delivering access to growth capital together with an award-winning restaurant operations team of more than 50 industry veterans who formerly led restaurant development at Four Foods Group, one of the fastest-growing restaurant operators in the nation. Mercato Partners Thursday announced its inaugural food […]

Mercato Partners Unveils $90M Fund To Invest In Profitable Restaurant Concepts

June 4, 2020 - Posted via Crunchbase
While some restaurants have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, one venture firm is taking a $90 million bet on the industry. Salt Lake City, Utah-based Mercato Partners has formed its inaugural food and beverage fund to invest in profitable restaurants looking to scale. Mercato Partners managing director Greg Warnock has partnered with restaurant industry veteran and former […]

Mercato Partners Announces the Close of $90 Million Savory Fund I to Develop Promising Restaurant Concepts

June 4, 2020 - Posted via PR Newswire
Andrew K. Smith joins Mercato Partners and leads the newly formed Savory Fund with Mercato founder Greg Warnock and is currently deploying more than $90M New Mercato Partners fund, Savory, partners with high-potential restaurant concepts unlocking new value through a unique offering of capital and multi-unit growth expertise Savory’s portfolio thrives amid the economic downturn […]

Growth fund Mercato Partners launches $90 million Savory Fund to develop emerging fast-casual brands

June 4, 2020 - Posted via Nation's Restaurant News
Managing director Andrew Smith, former CEO of Four Foods Group, said Savory is filling a gap in private equity investment. Over 12 years at Four Foods Group, Andrew Smith built an empire of food and beverage brands that generated about a billion dollar in sales at 170 restaurant locations across the country. But despite the […]
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