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© Provided by Business Insider Fred DeLuca in an internal Subway employee calendar. Courtesy of a former Subway employee
- Subway cofounder and long-time CEO Fred DeLuca posed shirtless for a faux boudoir calendar.
- The calendar exemplifies parts of Subway's culture some found unprofessional and inappropriate.
- Subway encouraged socializing, and DeLuca was known for trying to seduce franchisees' wives, sources said.
- See more stories on Insider's business page.
Subway cofounder and long-time CEO Fred DeLuca became famous for his rags-to-riches story of building the brand into the largest restaurant chain in the world by location.
Subway Franchisees Say the Chain's New Melt Sandwiches Are Too Dangerous to Make
Courtesy of Subway Subway recently unveiled three all-new cheese-filled Fresh Melts. But if you had any intention of actually trying them, you might be out of luck. According to the North American Association of Subway Franchisees (NAASF), the sandwiches are too dangerous to make, which means they might be leaving your local sub shop soon. The association reportedly sent a "franchise warning notice" cautioning members of the potential risk, claiming NAASF couldn't "endorse this promotion under these circumstances," Restaurant Business reports.
But, behind the scenes, insiders say DeLuca's behavior could spark concerns.
In 2000, for example, a shirtless calendar of Subway executives was distributed among insiders at the company. DeLuca was the January model, posing in a darkened office. He is shirtless, holding a glass of what appears to be champagne in one hand and a blue notebook labeled "executive order" in the other.
Other months of the calendar feature the chain's chief development officer Don Fertman shirtless in a conference room and Dick Pilchen - Subway's first employee turned marketing guru - posing in the shower. © Provided by Business Insider Don Fertman, Fred DeLuca, and Dick Pilchen in an internal Subway employee calendar. Images courtesy of a former Subway employee
Read more: Subway cofounder Fred DeLuca ruled the company like a demigod and pursued wives of franchisees. How one man sent the world's biggest fast-food chain into a tailspin.
McDonald's is raising wages, but 95% of its US workers will not be impacted by the change
The wage increases will impact only company-owned McDonald's restaurants, which make up just 5% of the fast-food chain's roughly 13,700 US locations.On Thursday, McDonald's announced that it is rolling out pay increases, averaging 10%, at all corporate-owned stores. The increases will shift minimum pay to at least $11 for crew members and at least $15 for managers.
A former employee who shared the calendar with Insider said the incident highlighted a lack of professionalism shown by DeLuca and others in the Milford, Connecticut headquarters.
Multiple former employees said that Subway had a "big family" atmosphere with DeLuca at the helm from 1965 until his death in 2015. Some embraced the social atmosphere, meeting significant others on the job and attending parties thrown by Subway. Others felt uncomfortable, with the ex-employee who shared the calendar saying it could feel like a "bizarre," insular high school.
Insiders said DeLuca engaged in other practices that they believed were inappropriate for a CEO. Two sources told Insider that DeLuca would pursue franchisees' wives at conventions. According to one long-time franchisee, the practice infuriated some, but DeLuca got away with it because many at Subway saw him as a "demigod."
McDonald's Could Get Sued By Three Quarters of Its Franchisees For This
The ongoing battle between McDonald's and its franchisees over tech fee payments could end with legal action against the fast-food giant.The dispute over past tech fees totaling $70 million started when McDonald's sent an unexpected email to its operators last December, which stated the company would begin collecting $423-per-month technology fee payments to recoup what it called a lag from its previous payment structure, according to Restaurant Dive. Operators in turn pushed back against the unilateral implementation of monthly payments by McDonald's and temporarily ceased all communication with the company.
"He always felt that he could go and he could approach any woman," at Subway conventions "because he was responsible for their husband's success in stores," a business associate said.
One long-term girlfriend, Cindy Mattson, filed a lawsuit against DeLuca's estate after his death, claiming he had adopted a child with her, without signing the formal adoption papers. Mattson claimed that DeLuca promised to support her and her son - named Luca - with $20 million, according to court documents obtained by Insider. DeLuca's wife, Elisabeth DeLuca, denied the claims. Mattson later filed a document saying she had received full payment or otherwise settled or compromised on the claim. (Mattson did not respond to Insider's requests for comment).
Read the full story of how Fred DeLuca built the sandwich empire, while sowing the seeds for Subway's downward spiral, here.
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Subway Launched An Entire Website To Prove Their Tuna Is Real Once And For All .
Read it for yourself.