Our annual listing of the
industry’s major contract
shows a sector innovating
and finding ways to grow.
While times have undoubtedly been tough in the broad U.S. economy over the past year, onsite foodservice's contract management company sector found ways to add about $2 billion in revenues over the period. Indeed, most of the companies in the 2008 Top 50 showed some growth — in some cases even spectacular growth — in their latest fiscal numbers.
Aramark's regaining of the top slot in the listing is the most prominent change in the 2008 Top 50, but perhaps more significant for the industry as a whole is the fact that a number of major regional companies heavily invested in the B&I segment seemed to find ways to grow. They include #7 Guckenheimer, #16 CulinArt, #18 Lackmann and #19 Parkhurst. That's on top of reported organic increases in B&I business among the “Big Three.”
The Top 50 is confined to firms that operate significant manual foodservice operations, whatever else they may do. For this reason, companies that are, for example, exclusively vending specialists or caterers are not included.
While the Top 50 is an excellent resource for determining the major national and regional players in the contract foodservice sector, caution should be exercised before drawing larger conclusions about a company's market position simply from its nominal standing on the list.
Onsite foodservice is a remarkably varied industry encompassing operations in a wide variety of environments, from school lunchrooms to football stadium skyboxes. Given this diversity, one should review the business summaries for each company to get a more accurate picture of its market activity.
Another complicating factor: contract terms that affect the revenue a contractor derives from a particular operation may obscure the scope of what is being managed. For instance, a contractor may get more top-line revenue from a modest-sized P&L operation than from a straight fee arrangement that actually feeds many more customers.
In the Top 50, we use the gross revenue number that reflects the dollars companies put on their top line rather than a managed volume number because in the end, a company's size is most accurately indicated by its gross revenues.
Click and read about the Top 50 Management Companies
SALES VOL. 2007: $8,430
CONTRACTS 2007: 3,409
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): B&I (29%), Sports/Entertainment (20%), College/University (20%), Healthcare (17%), Corrections (5%), Vending/OCS (5%), K-12 (4%)
The sales volume shown is for Aramark's domestic Food & Support Services business for fiscal year 2007. It includes revenues from both foodservice and the many non-food-related support services the company offers. The international Food & Support Services unit generated an additional $2.3 billion while the Uniforms unit added $1.67 billion.
Aramark catered its 14th Olympiad when it oversaw dining for athletes and the press at the recent Beijing Games.
Domestically, the company initiated a number of noteworthy programs over the past year, including Zoca Fresh to the Max, a fast casual Mexican concept developed by Aramark Higher Education; AMP Up With Breakfast, a flexible school breakfast delivery vehicle from Aramark School Services; reusable Grab and Go Green bags, a waste-reducing takeout solution from Aramark Business Dining; and the Colors of Summer promotional series highlighting the use of fresh seasonal produce in retail and patient dining recipes, from Aramark Healthcare.
Aramark Sports & Entertainment landed one of the segment's plum contracts in its deal with Citi Field, the new home (starting in 2009) of Major League Baseball's New York Mets. The unit also inked agreements with the Toronto Blue Jays, the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Philadelphia Zoo while the Higher Education unit scored deals with the University of Minnesota, the University of Toledo and the University of Texas-San Antonio.
Among major executive moves, Aramark named Robert Wilson president of the Aramark Refreshment Services unit, Gary Crompton president of Aramark Business Dining and Marc Bruno president of Aramark Stadiums & Arenas.
On the acquisition front, Aramark acquired Gold Cup Service, a Florida-based office refreshment services firm that also operates in the Atlanta and Charlotte markets.
Currently, Aramark manages dining and food services for 1,315 B&I locations, 369 hospitals, 487 colleges/universities, 400 K-12 school districts, 53 senior dining locations, 550 corrections facilities, 130 arenas/stadiums, 60 conference centers and 45 parks/recreation/arts centers.
SALES VOL. 2007: $8,200
CONTRACTS 2007: 8,121
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): B&I (28%), Education (23%), Healthcare (22%), Recreation (15%), Vending/OCS (10%), Other (2%)
Compass North America is a division of London-based Compass Group PLC. It accounted for 40% of the parent company's revenues in fiscal 2007, a small decline from the 42% posted in 2006 (and attributable primarily to the dollar's sharp decline against the Euro). North America actually outpaced the company's Continental Europe and United Kingdom units in organic growth in fiscal 2007 (6% vs. 4% and 2%, respectively) and through the first half of fiscal 2008, when North American organic growth reached 7%.
Fiscal 2007 growth was led by the Education and Healthcare segments, where organic gains hit 9% and 7%, respectively. Compass credits expansion in Education to the its healthy eating programs and the growing strength of its Chartwells brand. Healthcare is benefitting from increased cross-selling between the Morrison foodservice unit and the Crothalls support services unit. That factor has accelerated organic growth into double digits in the first half of fiscal 2008.
The B&I business posted a 4% organic increase in a difficult market in fiscal 2007 while the Sports & Leisure business continued to expand due in significant part to growth in the Levy Restaurants unit.
Major contract wins over the past year have included St. John's University, the University of New Mexico, the University of Maryland-Baltimore County, St. Louis Schools, the University of Texas-Dallas, the Barclays Center, the Sports Museum of America and the U.S. House of Representatives.
The Morrison healthcare unit launched a major initiative partnering with Weight Watchers earlier this year to bring Weight Watchers branded menu items into Morrison units.
In its operations, Compass over the past year has continued to emphasize healthful dining and sustainability. Its Balanced Choices Superfoods promotions, Indian Harvest Recipe Contest and Wild Alaskan Salmon promotion are examples of the former and its introduction of cage-free shell eggs, its new partnership with prominent free-trade/organic coffee concern Pura Vida and its commitment to sustainable seafood are examples of the latter.
SALES VOL. 2007: $7,300
CONTRACTS 2007: 6,000
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): B&I (35%), Healthcare (24%), College/University (18%), K-12 (5%), Other (18%)
Sodexo (formerly Sodexho), Inc., is the North American division of Paris-based Sodexo (formerly Sodexho Alliance). Both dropped the “h” from their names this past year as part of a corporate image overhaul.
The North American unit generates around 41% of the parent company's total revenues, and about half of its food and management services revenues. For fiscal 2008 North American revenues posted a 5.2% increase over the first nine months of the year. It was led by the healthcare segment, which grew 8.3%, while B&I and education grew 3.9% and 3.4%, respectively.
Healthcare also led the way in fiscal 2007, with an 8.5% organic revenue increase generated in part by a series of contract wins: Brandywine Hospital in Coatsville, PA; Crittenton Hospital Medical Center in Rochester, MI; Asbury Methodist Village in Gaithersburg, MD; Acute Care Hospitals in Minneapolis-Saint Paul and Marin General Hospital in Greenbrae, CA.
The company initiated several programs boosting sustainability in the past year, including a commitment to replace existing dishwashing products and systems in all its client sites in the U.S. with an environmentally friendly dishwashing chemical system.
On the culinary front, Sodexo has forged alliances with several outside “celebrity chefs,” including Stephan Pyles, who inspired the menu at the Sodexo-operated Dallas Museum of Art's Seventeen Seventeen restaurant. Similarly, Marvin Woods joined with Sodexo School Services to enhance the Atlanta Public Schools high school food service program with a special emphasis on educating students about healthy choices that taste great. And James Beard Award winning chef Michael Smith, one of Canada's best-known culinarians, is collaborating with Sodexo Canada on sustainable culinary practices and employee training and development.
SALES VOL. 2007: $2,003
CONTRACTS 2007: 132
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): Stadiums/Arenas (34%), Parks/Recreation (16%), Airports (16%), Other (34%)
Each of DNC's units made news in the past year. Sportservice landed the dining/catering contract for the new Minnesota Twins ballpark that will open in 2010. Travel Hospitality Services secured a contract to operate food and beverage in the Nashville International Airport, opened 16 units in four toll plazas on the New York State Thruway and invested more than $7.5 million to expand its offerings at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport. The Parks & Resorts unit was tapped to operate the Gideon Putnam Spa Resort in Saratoga Spa (NY) State Park while Delaware North Boston, which operates TD Banknorth Garden arena, opened its new Garden View corporate entertaining venue and created a new two-tier approach to club seating.
DNC also established a new Gaming Hospitality Group late last year to leverage its experience in the gaming area. The Gaming/Entertainment unit initiated a number of projects over the year, including a $15 million expansion of Saratoga Gaming & Raceway, a $40 million renovation of Southland Park Gaming & Racing and the opening of a $22 million Daytona Beach Kennel Club & Poker Room.
SALES VOL. 2007: $740.7
CONTRACTS 2007: 131
SEGMENTS SERVED: Stadiums/Arenas (66%), Convention/Conference Centers (27%), Parks/Recreation (7%)
Centerplate's current clients include seven Major League Baseball, 11 NFL, two NBA and two NHL franchises. However, the company will lose its largest client, the New York Yankees, representing about 10 percent of its revenues, next year when the team moves to a new ballpark where it will self-operate concessions and catering.
Among recent moves, the company has inked a supply deal with high-end meat supplier Niman Ranch for its hot dog, hamburger and sausage products, which it will serve with regional condiments in its sports venues across the country. It also secured long-term contracts with the TELUS Whistler (BC) Conference Centre in Canada and the Orange County (FL) Convention Center, and entered into an agreement with Crimson Tide Sports Marketing to provide food, beverage and retail merchandise services at all University of Alabama athletic events.
Over the past year, Centerplate also acquired a controlling interest in the Harry's Tap Room restaurant brand and acquired four Indianapolis area food and beverage service contracts worth $12 million in annual revenue from Sun Capital. They include the Indiana State Museum, the Indianapolis Zoo and the Murat Centre, the city's largest theater. In addition, Centerplate has extended its contract with the Indianapolis Convention Center and named Alfonso Contrisciani — one of only 62 Master Chefs in the world — vice president of culinary development.
SALES VOL. 2007: $400(e)
CONTRACTS 2007: 70(e)
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): College/University (60%), B&I (25%), Healthcare (15%)
AVI is one of the nation's largest vending and office coffee services providers. Recently, it has been concentrating on building its manual foodservice business. This now generates around $50 million in annual revenues.
The manual foodservice operations are divided between two divisions. One serves institutional clients like colleges and hospitals. The other operates in B&I in conjunction with the much larger vending group.
Onsite dining clients include the University of Michigan Medical Center, the Cleveland Clinic, Wayne State University, Kutztown University, Kenyon College, Delphi and National City Bank.
REDWOOD SHORES, CA
SALES VOL. 2008: $332
CONTRACTS 2008: 215
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (97%), Other (3%)
Guckenheimer has grown from a West Coast regional player to being a national company that is the largest provider of dining services to the corporate dining segment outside of the “Big Three” of Aramark, Compass and Sodexo. It currently operates in 29 states and maintains half a dozen regional offices. The company continues to focus on emphasizing fresh, natural and authentic ingredients and from-scratch food preparation.
Northern California remains Guckenheimer's strongest territory and one that continues to generate a good portion of its annual growth. However, the company continues to land new accounts in other areas as well.
SALES VOL. 2007: $320
CONTRACTS 2007: 103
SEGMENTS SERVED: Government (45%), B&I (30%), Parks/Recreation Centers (10%), Other (15%)
Originally founded 90 years ago to provide government facilities in Washington with foodservices, Guest Services is a public benefit corporation whose current government clients include the State and Energy Departments, the FBI and the Centers for Disease Control. Guest Services manages cafés in public institutions like the National Gallery and the Holocaust Museum, operates retail outlets in public spaces like the National Mall, the National Aquarium and the Interior Dept. and manages recreational facilities in public parks like Canaan Valley Resort, Mount Rainer and Big Sur Lodge.
The company also has private B&I clients like Raytheon, Honeywell, Provident Bank and the Washington Times as well as several schools and universities. It gets about half of its revenues from dining, retail, catering and concessions operations, with its Lancaster Foods subsidiary wholesaling fresh produce and flowers to account for the rest of the volume.
Recent initiatives have included new menu concepts like DC Flats, a flatbread pizza concept, and Toss! a salad bar concept.
SALES VOL. 2007: $265
CONTRACTS 2007: 110
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (46%), College/University (30%). K-12 (15%), Other (9%)
Thompson is one of the country's largest minority-owned businesses. It operates both franchised commercial restaurants and onsite dining sites. This past June, the company acquired Washington-based gourmet grocer Marvelous Market, expanding its commercial operations into the retail grocery sector.
Previously, Thompson had acquired Tex-Mex chain Austin Grill, where it is now expanding the menu and for which it has launched a franchising program. Also in the commercial area, Thompson has developed a new upscale casual restaurant concept called American Tap Room in Reston, VA.
In the onsite dining area, Thompson operates campus dining at 22 higher education accounts, many of them historically black colleges and community colleges. In addition, it partners with various business units of Compass Group to serve several dozen corporate dining clients, including Pepsi headquarters (with Flik), IBM and Microsoft (with Eurest), Chevron/Texaco (with Restaurant Associates) and the Washington Post (with Canteen). It also partners with Chartwells on contracts with the Chicago, Newark and Spotsylvania (VA) school districts and Radford University.
GREENWOOD VILLAGE, CO
SALES VOL. 2007: $250(e)
CONTRACTS 2007: 25(e)
SEGMENTS SERVED: Parks/Recreation (100%)
Xanterra (known as Amfac until 2002) was formed in 1995 through the acquisition of TW Recreational Services, a business that traced its history back to 1905. Then, as the Fred Harvey Co., it began managing concessions operations in national parks like the Grand Canyon. Today, it operates in national parks like Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon and Crater Lake, as well as several resorts and eight Ohio state parks. The operations include managing foodservice (both full-service restaurants and quick-serve cafés) and operating a variety of guest and amenities services.
SALES VOL. 2007: $230
CONTRACTS 2007: 158
SEGMENTS SERVED: Stadiums/Arenas (50%), Convention/Conference Centers (30%), Other (20%)
Boston Culinary Group manages concessions, merchandise sales and upscale catering and luxury suite service. Clients include 19 arenas, nine stadiums and several dozen convention centers, skiing facilities, performing arts centers and other venues. It also owns and/or operates movie theaters and commercial restaurants. The company continues to infuse menu items from its restaurants into its sports, recreation and convention menus and has installed regional items and concepts in its Florida accounts. It also expanded the role of its Culinary Council and Corporate Executive Chef Orlando Morales.
SALES VOL. 2007: $178
CONTRACTS 2007: 90
SEGMENTS SERVED: Stadiums/Arenas (46%), Convention/Conference Centers (19%), Other (35%)
Ovations is part of the Comcast-Spectacor entertainment conglomerate. The parent company also owns several major and minor-league sports teams and arenas, a 24-hour sports programming network and a facility management firm. Ovations operates in convention and exposition centers, fairgrounds, parks, amphitheaters and 38 sports stadiums and arenas.
These include Jacksonville Municipal Stadium, home of the NFL's Jacksonville Jaguars, and the Rose Garden, home of the NBA's Portland Trail Blazers, as well as minor league and spring training ballparks and sports venues at Wright State, San Jose State, Fresno State, Temple and George Mason Universities.
Recently, Ovations rolled out its Chef's Center Stage concept, a presentation-style cooking initiative, as well as chaferless buffet service. It has also emphasized environmentally proactive policies to reduce waste and water consumption, improve energy efficiency and pursue local purchasing policies.
SALES VOL. 2007: $171
CONTRACTS 2007: 336
SEGMENTS SERVED: Senior Nutrition/Home Delivery (43%), Hospitals (23%), B&I (12%), Other (22%)
Valley realizes close to half of its revenues from manufacturing and distributing meals (including some frozen meals intended for home consumption)for senior nutrition programs. The rest comes from managing dining operations in various segments.
It continues to emphasize health and wellness, becoming trans-fat free in all operating divisions. The company also enhanced its Outtakes program with new premium sandwich and salad choices, and implemented a training program that enrolls its directors in week-long culinary expereinces outside their locations.
Operationally, Valley initiated a strategic plan that will fully integrate each account with a comprehensive, computerized back office system and launched a POS program in its education accounts that lets parents view their kids' menu choices and fund their lunch accounts.
SALES VOL. 2007: $170(e)
CONTRACTS 2007: 24(e)
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): College/University (45%), B&I (35%), Other (20%)
Gourmet Services began in 1975 as a campus dining services provider to half a dozen historically black colleges. It expanded rapidly in that segment and into other segments, especially K-12 and B&I. To serve customers better, it also secured branding alliances with a number of notable street restaurant chains, including McDonald's, Cinnabon, Chick-fil-A and Subway.
ST. CLAIR SHORES, MI
SALES VOL. 2007: $147
CONTRACTS 2007: 101
SEGMENTS SERVED: Hospitals (83%), Eldercare (17%)
Dining services, which HHA only began offering in 2005, now represents about a fifth of its revenues. Led by former ServiceMaster foodservice vice president Rick Abele, HHA's food & nutrition department is expected to grow annual sales volume by at least 25% in each of the next several years, the company says. Meanwhile, the rest of HHA's revenue stream is derived from various non-food-related support services to healthcare institutions (reflected in the firm's original name and the source of its acronym — Hospital Housekeepers of America).
Among its food-related services, HHA offers retail and patient dining and foodservice consulting to both hospitals and senior care centers. The company has developed a portfolio of both patient and resident dining concepts as well as retail brands. Clients include Mt. Sinai Hospital Medical Center in Chicago, the Trihealth Bethesda System in Cincinnati, Grandview Hospital/Medical Center in Dayton and South Florida Baptist Hospital in Plant City.
SALES VOL. 2008: $140
CONTRACTS 2008: 116
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (53%), College/University (24%), K-12 (11%), Other (12%)
CulinArt struck a deal last August for Williamson Hospitality Services (#45 on the 2007 Top 50), which brought it more than 30 accounts in the Delaware Valley and Greater Philadelphia markets, including 16 in the education segment. CulinArt also added two locations of Tyco Electronics and nine additional education accounts through the efforts of its own business development group.
Other initiatives include the Eat Well Challenge in support of National Nutrition Month, which provides tools and support to encourage customers to make smart food selections over the course of the month; the CulinArt Culinary Academy, which takes a culinary education roadshow to various account locations; and the development of the company's Sustainability Task Force to support CulinArt's green efforts.
On the food front, new concepts include Cocina Fresca, a Southwest/Mexican concept; Wrapsody, featuring grilled sandwiches and wraps made with lavash bread; and Friterie, an upscale french fries concept.
HUNTINGDON VALLEY, PA
SALES VOL. 2007: $110
CONTRACTS 2007: 250(e)
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): Eldercare (90%), Other (10%)
The volume listed is foodservice only. Healthcare Services Group derives the bulk of its $577.7 million in annual revenues from providing housekeeping, laundry, linen and facility maintenance services. It operates in 2,100 nursing homes, rehabilitation facilities, retirement centers and hospitals in 47 states and Canada.
Clients include the Golden Horizons nursing home chain, which accounts for about 16% of total company revenues, and 21% of foodservice revenues. HSG acquired Summit Services Group, Inc., also a provider of professional housekeeping, laundry and food services to long-term care facilities, in the fall of 2006, but the deal only accounts for about 1.5% of the revenue increase in the foodservice business. Most came from selling foodservice management services to existing houskeeping clients.
SALES VOL. 2008: $97
CONTRACTS 2008: 82
SEGMENTS SERVED: College/University (52%), B&I (37%), Other (11%)
Lackmann entered new markets in Northern Florida and Rochester, NY, in the past year and also initiated the transition of its marketing department into three divisions: Corporate Support, Campus Services and B&I Accounts. It rolled out a number of new concepts, including Pizza Xchange (pizzas topped with salads), as well as Charcoals Grille and Maui Tacos. Also new are late night and delivery options for customers, and a high-quality grab-and-go program that includes desktop delivery.
Another big hit was digital menu boards at each station in the Hofstra University Student Center, where customers can view the menu and promotions for the day. Lackmann is also concentrating on sustainability with its Going Green initiatives.
SALES VOL. 2007: $95
CONTRACTS 2007: 42
SEGMENTS SERVED: College/University (65%), B&I (30%), Other (5%)
Parkhurst is one of two onsite foodservice divisions (with #27 Cura Hospitality) of the Eat'n Park Hospitality Group's Onsite Brands Division. The company continues to make sustainability, local sourcing and healthy dining key components of its business plan. It works with B&I clients like Westinghouse and Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield to support corporate wellness initiatives with attractive, prominently merchandised healthy options — not just on the lunch menu but for breakfast, breaks and catering as well.
The company's Hemisflavors program, introduced late last year, features over 250 fresh global cuisine recipes prepared in authentic ways with raw ingredients indigenous to the countries from which the dishes originate. These include Brazil, Greece, India, Mexico, Morocco, Thailand and Vietnam, with Spain and Japan slated for addition later this year.
Other initiatives include Traveling Chefs, an intra-company guest chef program, and Eco-Steps, a green-tinged marketing program.
HUNTINGTON STATION, NY
SALES VOL. 2008: $94.5
CONTRACTS 2008: 181
SEGMENTS SERVED: K-12 (53%), B&I (16%), Other (31%)
Whitsons revamped its Spice quarterly marketing program with a renewed focus on authentic cuisines from specific regions around the world. It also added new features — such as educational posters and lesson plans that teach healthy lifestyle and eating habits — to its K-12 nutrition education program and re-specked many of its products to increase the overall health profile of its offerings. The criteria include no trans fats, hormone/antibiotic-free milk and chicken and canned fruit packed in water.
On the business side, Whitsons is moving to a paperless environment with a new company extranet accessible online for account management and dissemination of company information. Whitsons has also expanded its support staff infrastructure in the areas of maketing, information technology, culinary development and training.
SALES VOL. 2008: $92
CONTRACTS 2008: 100
SEGMENTS SERVED: Eldercare (56%), Hospitals (26%), B&I (18%)
Unidine made no acquisitions in the last year, but the companies it acquired in previous years have helped contribute to highly impressive top-line growth in 2007-08.
Among recent initiatives in support of that growth are decentralized dining programs and resident choice plans that enhance dining at the company's senior dining sites. Unidine is also developing a new seasonally specific recipe system that will help the company emphasize “superfoods.”
Unidine also added a new culinary director, Paul Booras, and a green packaging program that gives clients the option to purchase environmentally sound disposables. Other “green” initiatives include kitchen oil recycling, a trial at three B&I sites of using cage-free eggs and the unveiling of the company's Plow to Plate program at New Mitford Hospital, which seeks to source 95% of products from the local community.
WEST NEWTON, PA
SALES VOL. 2007: $90
CONTRACTS 2007: 332
SEGMENTS SERVED: K-12 (80%), Eldercare (14%), Other (6%)
Nutrition, Inc., is one of four divisions that make up The Nutrition Group, which offers clients an integrated package of food, custodial/maintenance, vending, dining facility design and consulting services. It picked up eight school district clients in Pennsylvania and eastern Ohio in the past year, bringing its total to around a hundred. The company also serves senior citizen centers in six Pennsylvania counties, 52 Head Start programs and day care facilities, along with various summer feeding programs and summer camps.
One of its most successful recent programs has been a recipe contest in which its units compete to develop the best school-appropriate dishes, which are then adopted across the system.
SALES VOL. 2007: $84
CONTRACTS 2007: 119
SEGMENTS SERVED: K-12 (35%), B&I (20%), Eldercare (17%), College/University (16%), Other (12%)
Now operating in 10 states, Metz in the past year has expanded its Mexican/Southwestern Poblano's concept, adding new menus, bright, colorful decor and eye-catching signage. It has also partnered with PA Preferred, Jersey Fresh and Ohio Proud, all local sourcing organizations in states where Metz operates, to increase the use of local produce in its menus. The company is also increasing its use of organic product, including in its Up for Grabs grab-and-go concept and its Market Street Deli concept.
Metz also launched its Green Team environmental program to help develop and support sustainability initiatives. It is headed by Kathy Gonzalez, newly named vice president of nutrition education services. Also, Craig Solomon was named vice president of healthcare services.
SALES VOL. 2008: $82
CONTRACTS 2008: 225
SEGMENTS SERVED: K-12 (63%), B&I (16%), College/University (10%), Other (11%)
Taher operates primarily in the Upper Midwest. In the past year it has expanded into the commercial foodservice sector, opening four restaurants in the Twin Cities area. However, restaurant operations only accounted for about two percent of revenues in its most recent fiscal year. Most of Taher's revenues continue to come from managing dining operations in businesses and institutions. About 10 percent comes from vending operations.
In its onsite operations, Taher continues to emphasize chef-driven programs, healthy dishes and locally sourced ingredients. It has also increased its budget for staff training.
SALES VOL. 2007: $69.4
CONTRACTS 2007: 104
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (54%), Government (18%), Other (28%)
Southern continued a strategic planning initiative designed to analyze its position in the market and develop growth strategies. It also implemented a corporate resource enhancement program, which includes a recruitment component, to strengthen its culinary skills and capabilities. On the culinary front, it upgraded most of its deli stations to the Boar's Head concept, expanded its Smart Cuisine healthy dining program to include a comprehensive lineup of healthy choices at each station and implemented a value-based menu pricing program.
SALES VOL. 2007: $66.2
CONTRACTS 2007: 140
SEGMENTS SERVED: College/University (45%), K-12 (30%), Eldercare (24%), Other (1%)
This past April, Aladdin and its AmeriServe subsidiary were acquired by a new entity, Trusthouse Services Group, Inc. It's listed because it operated independently most of last year. Led by former Compass Group CEO Michael Bailey, Trusthouse plans to build a business concentrated in the healthcare and education segments. These are the segments Aladdin serves in 20 states in the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast.
SALES VOL. 2007: $64
CONTRACTS 2007: 33
SEGMENTS SERVED: Eldercare (92%), Other (8%)
Cura is one of two onsite foodservice divisions of the Eat'n Park Hospitality Group's Onsite Brands Division (the other is #19 Parkhurst Dining Services). In the past year, it entered the hospital segment and now has three hospital clients: Windber (PA) Medical Center, Mercy Medical Center of Baltimore and St. Clair Hospital in Pittsburgh.
In its unit operations, Cura emphasizes more fresh, locally produced foods through Eat n' Park's Farmsource local procurement program. Culinarily, it has added more global flavors and international recipes to meet the expectations of a more sophisticated generation in its senior dining accounts. In its growing hospital business, bedside order entry and trendy retail cafés are the company's emphases.
SALES VOL. 2007: $63
CONTRACTS 2007: 132
SEGMENTS SERVED: Eldercare (30%), K-12 (25%), College/University (15%), B&I (10%), Corrections (10%), Government (10%)
MMI Dining is a division of the MMI Hotel Group for which it manages foodservice operations. It also provides country club management services, foodservice management for schools and colleges, auxiliary and foodservices for senior living communities, hotel food and beverage management and corporate dining management. The company says it is looking for growth in the Southeast market in the government, corrections, college, K-12 and country club management segments.
SALES VOL. 2007: $54
CONTRACTS 2007: 800
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (85%), Other (15%)
CL Swanson is primarily a vending company that gets about a quarter of its revenues from dining operations, catering, office coffee and convenience retailing services. Currently, CL Swanson is increasing the products offered in its Better-4-You healthy eating program. It is also adding more ethnic dishes and increasing its offerings of packaged meals to give customers more value.
SALES VOL. 2008: $51
CONTRACTS 2008: 57
SEGMENTS SERVED: College/University (56%), Parks/Recreation (16%), Convention/Conference Ctrs. (14%) B&I (10%), Other (4%)
CDS's most significant initiative in the past year was the launch of its Grow sustainability program, which offers a flexible menu of five sustainability options: Go Local, Earth Friendly, Natural Protein, Hormone-Free Dairy and Sustainabile Seafood. Also, the pre-existing Food Matters program was re-introduced to mesh with Grow in its design and execution.
SALES VOL. 2007: $50(e)
CONTRACTS 2007: 45(e)
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): B&I (75%), Other (25%)
Vending accounts for about half of Sanese's volume. Manual foodservice in B&I, college and K-12 locations represents about a third. The company also delivers pre-plated, chilled lunches (made in its Columbus production center) to schools through its Lunches Kids Love program. Clients include the Capitol Café in Ohio's statehouse complex in Columbus.
SALES VOL. 2007: $50
CONTRACTS 2007: 45
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): Hospitals (50%), B&I (45%), Other (5%)
Thomas recently introduced a standalone healthy fare concept and incorporated lean operating principles into its daily operations, enabling a cook-to-order process driven by the consumer. The company has also taken an operationally green approach to unit level operations that incorporates food, packaging, chemical and utility usage components. It has begun to educate its customers on local sourcing as part of its marketing.
SALES VOL. 2007: $47.2
CONTRACTS 2007: 66
SEGMENTS SERVED: K-12 (98%), B&I (2%)
Pomptonian manages cafeterias and vending operations in some 275 primary and secondary school locations in over 60 districts. Like most companies operating in the K-12 segment, it has been working to menu healthier meal alternatives that students will enjoy. Part of its strategy involves using recognizable branded items that meet nutritional criteria. It has also expanded the amount of nutritional information it provides customers to help them make healthy food choices.
SALES VOL. 2007: $44
CONTRACTS 2007: 103
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (95%), Other (5%)
Epicurean Feast gets almost 80% of its revenues from managing dining operations, and most of the rest from catering, including elaborate events handled by its Currier & Chives unit. The company has recently emphasized health/wellness, action stations and exhibition cooking, proprietary grab-and-go programming, organic offerings and local and national product brands. Among recent initiatives are ones for “green” products, online catering/ordering systems, cashless payment and take-home food programs. It also opened a retail restaurant location, the 5 & Diner Deluxe in Worcester, MA.
SALES VOL. 2007: $40(e)
CONTRACTS 2007: 35(e)
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): B&I (40%), K-12 (25%), Other (35%)
Crystal has been a division of Marsh Supermarkets (Marsh and LoBill supermarkets, Village Pantry c-stores) since being acquired in 1995. The unit derives over a third of its revenues from catering and much of the rest from a combination of manual foodservice, vending, OCS and concessions.
OVERLAND PARK, KS
SALES VOL. 2007: $39.4
CONTRACTS 2007: 83
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (64%), College/University (11%), K-12 (11%), Other (14%)
Myron Green operates dining operations for Treat America, which also has substantial vending and office coffee business. It recently opened two B&I sites in Sacramento, CA, and another in Harrisburg, PA. It also now has a dozen college accounts in four Farm Belt states, which receive some 10,000 meals and snacks daily from the company's two commissaries.
Recent initiatives include an in-house culinary group called Ethique de Culinaire headed by new corporate chef/district manager Eddie Adel, a series of new regional branded concepts called Gourmet Gallery, the introduction of locally grown product and farmers markets in dining sites, and a series of other green initiatives ranging from oil recycling to introducing biodegradable disposables.
SALES VOL. 2007: $38.2
CONTRACTS 2007: 120
SEGMENTS SERVED: Eldercare (36%), K-12 (25%), Camps (15%), Government (11%), Other (13%)
Fitz Vogt was acquired along with Aladdin (#26 above) earlier this year to form a new company called Trusthouse Services Group. It is listed here because it operated independently for most of the past year. Among Fitz Vogt's recent initiatives are the use of “sensory meals” in assisted living dining rooms to stimulate the appetites of residents by preparing dishes in the view of residents, where they can see, hear and smell the food being prepared. Meanwhile, the Consistency Altered Diet Training Program teaches the company's chefs how to properly alter the consistency of meals for residents with swallowing difficulties.
SALES VOL. 2007: $37.5
CONTRACTS 2007: 84
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (95%), College/University (5%)
Founded 20 years ago, Corporate Chefs primarily operates in white collar business dining environments and colleges in New England, New York, New Jersey and Virginia. About two-thirds of revenues come from operating onsite cafés and most of the rest from catering operations. Client sites include the Ledgemont Center corporate complex in Lexington, MA, and the Clock Tower Place in Maynard, MA.
STERLING HEIGHTS, MI
SALES VOL. 2007: $34.3
CONTRACTS 2007: 135
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (58%), Convention/Conference Centers (16%), Other (26%)
Continental realizes about half of its revenues from vending. Its catering services, representing about 20% of the volume, are highlighted by two cruise ships it owns and uses to host events. Some of its recent initiatives include offering value menus such as four breakfast items for $4.44, offering smaller portions at reduced prices as “gas saver meals,” increased salad bar options and continued bi-monthly promotions.
Continental also introduced over a dozen new culinary stations to its banquet centers, hired a new procurement director and new regional café chef and launched a series of “green” initiatives like using organic, locally grown foods in some café locations and making biodegradable/recyclable disposable available to café clients.
SALES VOL. 2008: 34.2
CONTRACTS 2008: 50
SEGMENTS SERVED: Hospitals (68%), B&I (30%), K-12 (2%)
Prince grew over 25% in the past year, primarily in the healthcare segment. It operates primarily in Texas but penetrated neighboring Louisiana a couple years ago with a pair of long-term acute-care hospital accounts in Bogalousa and Houma. Its clients include Boeing, Lockheed-Martin, Samsung Semiconductor and Texas Petrochemicals in B&I, and 20 Texas healthcare facilities (plus the two in Louisiana), among them the St. Joseph Regional Health Center in Bryan and Triumph Hospitals in Sugar Land, Houston and Webster.
SALES VOL. 2007: $33.1
CONTRACTS 2007: 52
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (70%), K-12 (17%), Other (13%)
Brock celebrated its 80th year in business this past year by continuing to expand in the private/independent school segment. The company's K-12 business jumped from 13% to 17% in the past year though B&I remains the bulk of the company's business. Its corporate dining clients include T. Rowe Price Associates, the Washington Post, the Academy of Natural Sciences and Drinker, Biddle & Reath, LLP.
SALES VOL. 2007: $26.4
CONTRACTS 2007: 12
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (84%), Other (16%)
Off-premise catering has been the heart of Food For Thought for 25 years, but over the past decade, onsite dining services to Chicagoland clients has driven growth, especially in the past year. Most recently, Food For Thought added former Motorola Dining Services head Carol Bracken Tilley as vp-foodservice management to augment its B&I dining operations.
The addition of two key executives from Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises — former partner Matt McMillin as vp-culinary/innovation and former vp Martha Spezia as vp-purchasing — boosts the company's culinary and procurement expertise.
SALES VOL. 2007: $26
CONTRACTS 2007: 18
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (85%), Museums/Performing Arts Centers (10%), Other (5%)
RMA provides comprehensive foodservice programs for law firms, publishing companies, financial institutions and brokerage firms in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Manual dining accounts for about 60% of the business, catering for 30% and the rest split between office coffee and vending. Clients include Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch, Bank of Tokyo/Mitsubishi, Sun America AIG, Aegis Insurance, Garband Intercapital and Sapient. It also operates six commercial restaurants.
SALES VOL. 2008: $23.75
CONTRACTS 2008: 29
SEGMENTS SERVED: Government (40%), B&I (33%), College/University (15%), Hospitals (10%), Corrections (2%)
FAME (Food & Management Enterprise Corp.) generates about 60% of its revenues from managing dining operations. Another 20% comes from catering operations. The company launched a by-the-ounce concept this past year that has proved successful, and it is also now hiring mostly culinary graduates to upgrade its food preparations and presentations. Clients include the New York State Office of Mental Retardation & Developmental Disabilities in Albany.
SALES VOL. 2007: $20.9
CONTRACTS 2007: 43
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): Eldercare (70%), Hospitals (30%)
Nutrition Management Services is a publicly held entity traded over-the-counter. It manages manual foodservice, vending, snack shops and environmental services in continuing care facilities, hospitals and retirement communities and also operates the Collegeville (PA) Inn Conference/Training Center. This provides NMS a venue for showcasing its services and functions as an in-house training center and R&D lab.
Revenues through the first nine months of the company's 2008 fiscal year were $15.4 million, almost exactly the same as the first three quarters of fiscal 2007.
SALES VOL. 2008: $20(e)
CONTRACTS 2008: 61
SEGMENTS SERVED(e): B&I (78%), College/University (12%), Military/Government (10%)
Next Generation was formed in 2007 by acquiring the assets of All Seasons Services, a major vending and manual foodservice management company that had run into financial difficulties and been seized by a creditor after defaulting on a major loan. The company added to its business earlier this year with two other deals involving small vending and vending/dining concerns.
Like many companies, Next Generation is marketing healthy food choices, providing customers with healthy name brand choices through its proprietary Vitalities initiative.
Vending remains the bulk of the business but the number of contracts listed above refers only to onsite dining clients.
SALES VOL. 2007: $19
CONTRACTS 2007: 6
SEGMENTS SERVED: Military (76%), Eldercare (24%)
Gulf Coast Foodservice manages dining operations at five Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard bases in Florida, as well as at the Naval Construction Battalion Command in Gulfport, MS, and at the Armed Forces Retirement Home in Washington, DC. It is part of Gulf Coast Enterprises, the vocational services division of the Lakeview Center, a social services unit of Pensacola's Baptist Health Care.
GCE also operates administrative support/services, assembly/packaging and custodial services divisions. The volume listed above is for the foodservice unit only — the company as a whole has revenues of around $40 million.
Gulf Coast Foodservice is currently in the process of developing strategies for healthier menu choices. One change: new combi ovens at its military dining sites have already cut deep fat dryer usage by 60%.
SALES VOL. 2008: $18
CONTRACTS 2008: 34
SEGMENTS SERVED: K-12 (92%), Other (8%)
Fast-growing Quest (more than 20% growth five years in a row) is almost exclusvely a K-12 specialist operating in both public and private schools in Illinois. It recently rolled out its Culinary Station proprietary branded station selection, from which it assembles the food court mixes that are the focal points of its accounts. It has also strived to become more “green” in its operations, utilize locally grown product where practical and enhance its wellness programs.
EAST NORRITON, PA
SALES VOL. 2008: $15.2
CONTRACTS 2008: 48
SEGMENTS SERVED: Hospitals (28%), K-12 (24%), Community Service Programs (21%), Corrections (13%), Other (14%)
Linton's operates as a manager of onsite dining operations and supplier of preprepared meals for clients in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware and Florida. It is also a distributor of nonfood items like disposables, cleaning supplies, office products and medical supplies to some 225 locations, which constitute about a fifth of the business. The company is expanding its charter school business in the Philadelphia market and operates culinary arts and “Community Works” programs to help customers in schools and community programs find permanent jobs.
SALES VOL. 2007: $11
CONTRACTS 2007: 27
SEGMENTS SERVED: B&I (73%), Convention/Conference Centers (15%), Other (12%)
Kosch derives about 70% of its revenues from managing dining operations, and another 20% from catering. In the past year, Kosch has focused on market segment diversification (in addition to the segments listed above, it also has some accounts in the hospital and higher education segments). It also continued its movement toward using more local produce and products as well as more fresh produce in general, particularly organics.
(e): FM estimate
Where the Numbers Come From…
The number that determines each company's place in the Top 50 is its domestic top-line revenues for the most recently completed fiscal year (indicated in each entry in millions of dollars). Because most companies in the Top 50 operate on calendar years, they show a 2007 figure. In the few cases where a company completed and compiled 2008 fiscal numbers, we've used that figure. Where revenue or other numbers were not available, FM estimates are based on known accounts and other information (indicated by a red “e”).
TOP 50 at a glance
Compass Group North America
Delaware North Companies
AVI Food Systems, Inc.
Guckenheimer Enterprises, Inc.
Guest Services, Inc.
Thompson Hospitality Services
Xanterra Parks & Resorts
Boston Culinary Group, Inc.
Ovations Food Services
Valley Services, Inc.
Gourmet Services, Inc.
Healthcare Services Group, Inc.
Lackmann Culinary Services
Parkhurst Dining Services
Whitsons Culinary Group
dba The Nutrition Group
Metz & Associates, Ltd.
Southern Foodservice Management, Inc.
Aladdin Food Management Services, Inc.
MMI Dining Systems
CL Swanson Corp.
Creative Dining Services
Sanese Services, Inc.
Thomas Cuisine Management
Pomptonian Food Service
Crystal Food Services
Myron Green Corp./Treat America
Fitz, Vogt & Associates, Ltd.
Continental Dining & Refreshment Services
Prince Food Systems, Inc.
Brock & Co., Inc.
Food For Thought
Restaurant Marketing Associates
FAME Food Management, Inc.
Nutrition Management Services Co.
Next Generation Vending & Food Service, Inc.
Gulf Coast Enterprises Foodservice
Quest Food Management Services, Inc.
Linton's Managed Services
Kosch Catering & Corporate Dining