McDonald’s CEO James Skinner retiring

March 23, 2012

The retirement of 41-year veteran James Skinner comes as a surprise to many in the industry. His success at the helm has seen stock prices soar nearly 300 percent over the last eight years as the world’s largest restaurant brand succeeds in growing globally and domestically in a very difficult economic period. He has done a very nice” McJob” and it appears time for McDonald’s to make a “McMove”!

As Skinner steps down on June 30th, he will be succeeded by 22-year veteran Donald Thompson. Thompson will become the first African American in McDonald’s history to lead the chain and should provide strong continuity in the transition. His experience in global strategy and operations will certainly be a strength in supporting McDonald’s continued growth.

With a string of annual growth successes stories, Skinner will leave McDonald’s with the brand at the top of their game. Like many sports champions, it will not only take the talent, but the effective coaching to continue their momentum. Stay Tuned!

Cumin to Offer More Casual Fare in Spot Next Door

March 23, 2012

Cumin to Offer More Casual Fare in Spot Next Door

Cumin to Offer More Casual Fare in Spot Next Door

Tom Demeropolis, Cincinnati Business Courier, © 2012 American City Business Journals, Inc. All rights reserved.

The owner of one of Cincinnati’s top restaurants is opening a sister restaurant next door. Alex Mchaikhi, owner of high-end Cumin Eclectic Cuisine in Hyde Park, is cooking up a concept called M, short for “my favorite.” Unlike Cumin, M will be more of a neighborhood restaurant and bar, with a twist. “There’s a market for it, especially in Hyde Park,” Mchaikhi said. “The high end is for special occasions. You have to have people come in all the time.”

Cumin has been consistently ranked as one of Cincinnati’s top 10 restaurants by Cincinnati Magazine and is among the top 10 in the city, according to ratings guide Zagat.

M, with seating for 110, is scheduled to open this summer on Erie Avenue. It will fill two spaces formerly occupied by Snooty Fox and Amarin Fusion restaurant.

The menu at M comes from Owen Maass, executive chef at Cumin. Similar to Cumin, it will focus on local, seasonal ingredients, Maass said. He plans to offer wood-fired pizzas, rotisserie chicken, salads, craft beers and cocktails. Prices at M will be between $12 and $14 for an entree, compared with Cumin’s range of $20 to $40. Mchaikhi is financing the restaurant himself.

One dessert option Maass is planning is “cereal milk ice cream,” which will be house-made ice cream flavored by milk that has soaked up the flavors of different cereals.
“That’s the best part of the cereal,” Maass said.

While Mchaikhi is prepping the new restaurant, many independent restaurant owners have been closing their doors. Total restaurant visits declined from 62.7 billion in 2008 to 60.6 billion in 2011 and independent restaurants accounted for 87 percent of that decline, according to the NPD Group, a New York-based market research company.

Fine dining has been hit especially hard, said Darren Tristano, executive vice president with Chicago-based research firm Technomic Inc. Independent owners have either opened new concepts or switched to a more casual dining menu and experience, Tristano said. “Having that option allows an operator to garner more traffic,” he said.

Full article available at Business Courier