While working in finance and investing, Brandon Stewart discovered his passion for the restaurant industry through engaging directly with restaurant operators.
In 2019, Brandon became the President & COO of Kensington Hill Capital, an owner/operator of Jimmy John’s franchise locations.
Brandon opened his first Jimmy John’s in Birmingham, Alabama, in 2011, recognizing the QSR’s potential for growth. Today, Kensington Hill Capital owns and operates 58 Jimmy John’s locations across Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Ohio.
Photo Credit: Jimmy John's
- Brandon Stewart, President & COO, Kensington Hill Capital
The employee was KHC’s Director of Real Estate at the time, so there was no true repair-and-maintenance subject matter expert to consult. When a piece of equipment failed, an employee would have to contact Brandon about the incident. Then Brandon handled it all: getting quotes, managing vendor relationships, and dispatching service.
Oftentimes, the service technician would fix the issue and leave without following up or leaving a report. Brandon found himself unaware of the incident’s details, and therefore was unable to make key repair decisions that could have saved on costs.
“I know how to replace a glycol pump, but I don’t necessarily know how to tell if a glycol pump is down,” said Brandon. “I do now, but I would call them out, and say, ‘Hey, can you check this and make sure it’s correct?’ And if I don’t have that follow up, then I don’t get the chance to say, ‘Wait a minute, I’ve got a glycol pump in the back, and I can just take it out there and replace it.’”
Brandon also noted the serviced equipment would sometimes break down shortly following a technician’s visit. The time spent investigating the issue to find out what was wrong cost the team, and it became difficult to track restaurant repairs.
“That same cold table would break three, four weeks later, or I would find out that nobody ever came out. … And then I find out that either A, nothing happened, or B, they came out, and then we have no idea what they did when they came out, so we don’t know what was actually wrong with it. Because there’s just so much information flow, for me, tracking was impossible,” Brandon said.
While Brandon constantly considers how to optimize and scale the business, he was hesitant to outsource work to any third parties. But soon the process of hiring and training employees, growing the business, and managing all restaurant repairs became unsustainable—so he enlisted 86 Repairs to take repairs off his plate.
Now, 86 Repairs saves Brandon and his team’s time and costs on restaurant equipment repairs and maintenance. Deciding to onboard 86 Repairs meant Brandon no longer spends countless hours researching service providers, dispatching them, and lacking access to incident data over time. Plus, 86 Repairs handles issues concurrently across all 58 locations.
When equipment fails today, any store employee can report an incident directly to 86 Repairs, and it’s as simple as sending a text message.
A community manager—on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year—handles the entire process Brandon used to manage, letting employees get back to providing the in-restaurant experience. And, Brandon spends less time training and more time scaling.
Brandon also has more historical restaurant repair data than ever before because of 86 Repairs’ robust tracking system, saving KHC restaurants surprise costs and fees. And all the while, Brandon has a complete working knowledge of all restaurant equipment.
KHC has found a true partner in 86 Repairs.
Not only is R&M off their plate, but all of the data on every piece of equipment and every incident is tracked to demonstrate a solid ROI, helping Brandon keep his focus on scaling the business.