On almost every major street corner in America, fast food joints sell burgers, fries, and chicken nuggets. These multi-billion dollar businesses have become the landscape of America, the food system itself. But the world is changing. People are searching for more nutritious, fresher fare. Everytable aims to redefine the food landscape the same way McDonald’s did fifty years ago, but this time, we are selling nutritious, fresh, made-from-scratch food at fast-food prices instead of burgers and fries. Its business model drastically reduces the costs of the standard restaurant model. Chefs at local kitchens turn fresh, wholesome ingredients into delicious meals sold through small, grab-and-go storefronts. 

Founded in 2016, Everytable is a mission-driven food company based in Los Angeles that fights for food justice and equality by providing nutritious food that is both accessible and affordable for everyone. Everytable is a multi-channel, fresh-prepared food business blending stores, subscriptions, delivery, and SmartFridges supplied by a central kitchen. Located in food deserts, underserved communities with little or no access to nutritious food, and in affluent areas, food prices vary according to the neighborhoods served to ensure everyone can afford meals. 

To further its social benefits, Everytable is committed to creating opportunities for these franchisees. This is an entrepreneurial opportunity to build wealth for individuals with the potential to create generational wealth within families and communities. To achieve this, Everytable provides a year-long training through Everytable University. Entrepreneurs work full-time as store managers at a current Everytable location while receiving leadership and entrepreneurial education, mentoring, and coaching on relevant business topics. Upon completion, Everytable matches the Everytable University graduate with a franchise location and provides funding opportunities for entrepreneurs with limited access to personal wealth or capital through the Social Equity Franchise Fund (SEFF). 

Reinvestment Fund introduced SEFF to advance social equity objectives and is leading with an initial $8 million syndicate of Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) lenders in a debt financing for Everytable that could grow to $16 million as more investors join the lending group. SEFF ensures entrepreneurs secure 100% financing. Mission Driven Finance serves as the Fund Manager. 

In early 2023, the Community Investment Guarantee Pool (CIGP) closed an eight-year guarantee of up to $3.2 million for the portion of the Reinvestment Fund-led debt facility into the SEFF. The Fund is expected to fully deploy loans to entrepreneurs by the end of 2025. 

One of the first franchisees is Dee Adimora. She began her career working the graveyard shift at a fast-food restaurant in her 20s. Over the years, she became a manager but knew she wanted more. Now, 30 years later, Adimora is on her way to owning her own business due to SEFF. This model invests directly in entrepreneurs from marginalized communities systemically displaced from ownership. She said there were opportunities to be a franchisee at her old jobs, but “You have to come up with your own capital, and I didn’t have that capital. I never saw it down the line as something in my future.” 

For the most popular fast-food franchises, start-up costs range from $10,000 to well over $1 million. Franchise monthly fees, which are typically calculated as a percentage of gross sales, generally hover around the 5 percent mark, but can be as much as 50 percent. According to Business Insider, as of 2022 startup costs to open a McDonalds range from $1.36 million and $2.45 million. The minimum liquid asset requirement averages $500,000, with a franchise fee of $45,000. 

SEFF will provide franchise financing loans covering 100% of franchise start-up costs to qualified Everytable University graduates. Loans require no financial equity from entrepreneurs because they are secured against the franchise with five-year terms. This program is available to successful graduates of Everytable University. It allows franchisees to focus on successfully building their business while opening doors to additional entrepreneurial activities that could create intergenerational, familial wealth. 

Historically, people of color do not have access to the capital needed to open their business, so this program supplies the start-up costs to their trainees. Anyone with previous managerial experience can apply to be part of the year-long training course that prepares them to own a franchise with no money out of their pocket. They will receive an annual salary and only have to repay the loan once their store is profitable. 

Adimora continued, “I’ve always been passionate about Everytable’s mission to bring healthier food to underserved communities, and the franchise program gave me an opportunity to become more deeply involved in the business, grow financial stability, and work on a legacy to leave behind for my family… Being part of an organization that is fighting for food justice in the communities we serve, that just says enough for me.”. 

By providing franchise financing loans covering 100% of franchise start-up costs with a fixed interest rate of 8%, CIGP supports business ownership and wealth creation in historically divested communities while increasing access to affordable, nutrient-rich food over eight years.  

CIGP Executive Director Jim Baek explains, “Equitable access to capital isn’t just about opening doors to entrepreneurship; it’s about rewriting the narrative of opportunity. Just as Everytable reshapes the food landscape, at CIGP, we must reshape the economic landscape by ensuring that financial resources, like guarantees, are not barriers but bridges to all individuals, regardless of background, to cultivate prosperity, build legacies, and nourish communities.” 

CIGP is a first-of-its-kind platform allowing guarantors to combine resources and expertise by establishing a single, one-stop shop for intermediary lenders in the climate, affordable housing, and small business sectors. With management by Locus, this pooled commitment of financial guarantees aims to unlock capital and accelerate community investments that would not otherwise be possible across America. Together, this group is making more and new types of community development transactions feasible by putting more of their assets to work in service of greater community impact.

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