Mark Whittle, CFE Chief Development Officer - Hooters of America, LLC

Mark’s robust experience spans 31 years in corporate and franchise development, specifically in site selection, franchise sales, design and construction for the restaurant industry. Mark currently serves as Chief Global Development Officer for Hooters of America, the iconic 33 year old brand with over 420 restaurants in 28 countries. Prior to joining Hooters, Mark was the Chief Development Officer for Huddle House restaurants in Atlanta, Georgia.

Mark’s other experience includes Focus Brands, where he served as the VP of Real Estate for Carvel, Cinnabon, Schlotzsky’s, and Moe’s SW Grill, Krystal Company where he was the Sr. Director for Franchise Development, Churchs Chicken as the National Director of Real Estate, and Little Caesars Pizza where he was the Director, Corporate Development for North America.

Mark received his B.S. and MBA from California Coast University. He is also a Certified Franchise Executive (“C.F.E.”) through the International Franchise Association.

When not focused on the growth of Hooters restaurants, Mark serves as the President of the Georgia Fire Youth Softball Organization, a non-profit Corporation dedicated to providing support to young ladies in their advancement of their desires to play collegiate level softball, and helping them prepare themselves athletically and educationally for college. In addition, he serves as President and CEO of Barksalot Animal Rescue, Inc., a non-profit corporation dedicated to rescue and rehabilitation of all forms of animals.

Presenting in the following seminars/workshops:

Friday, June 16, 2017
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
New Techniques for Franchisee Financing

Room: 1A05

Moderated by: Bret Lowell, Partner, DLA Piper US LLP

Panelists: Rocco Fiorentino, CFE, CEO, Benetrends, Inc.; Kirsten Benson, Capital Access Advisor, FRANdata; Mark Whittle, CFE, Chief Development Officer, Hooters of America, LLC

Many franchisors assist their franchisees in obtaining financing. Learn about the different approaches to franchisee financing, including franchisor-sponsored and non-sponsored financing. This session will cover many aspects of franchise financing programs, including identifying successful industry models and examining the pitfalls of less successful programs. The session will also explore the use of tri-party agreements, the types of direct financing available to multi-unit and other franchisees, how to choose between lenders and lender products, the steps needed to obtain a loan, and the types of loans available for different purposes (i.e., new franchises vs. remodels). Finally, we will discuss opportunities for franchisors to assist their franchisees in understanding various credit programs and successfully navigating the debt markets.
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