The Funds target underrepresented operators, both new and existing.
Miami, Florida – Lafayette Square has signed an agreement with Yum! Brands, Inc. to lend up to $50 million to new and existing underrepresented Yum! franchisees identified by Yum! Brands as part of a new financing program called Franchise Fast Start.
Franchise Fast Start will help Yum! Brands carve a path to successful ownership for talented, underrepresented people while bringing diverse voices and ideas to the broader franchising community. By providing access to capital for qualified, underrepresented franchisees identified by Yum! Brands, the program will open opportunities for entrepreneurs pursuing multi-unit franchise transactions.
Wanda Williams , Head of Global Franchising, Yum Brands
“This program is another step toward our goal of becoming the world’s multi-brand franchisor of choice which strives to create a global franchise system as diverse as the communities we serve,” said Wanda Williams, Head of Yum! Global Franchising. “Our communities and the industry benefit from diversity of ownership and thought, and Franchise Fast Start will help level the franchising playing field and break down barriers for underrepresented people to become franchise owners.”
The financing program will also have the flexibility to lend more expansively to franchises on a strategic basis, facilitating growth capital for both qualified new and existing franchisees.
“We are excited to manage this financing program with Yum! Brands,” said Damien Dwin, Founder and CEO of Lafayette Square. “By collaborating with the world’s largest restaurant company, we believe we can reach more local businesses and impact more prospective and existing franchisees across the United States. It is a compelling opportunity to expand access to capital to underserved people and communities and achieve impact at scale.”
Damien Dwin, Founder and CEO of Lafayette Square
About Lafayette Square
Lafayette Square aims to create investment opportunities in overlooked places and underserved markets. We invest across asset classes and seek to provide robust risk-adjusted returns to investors while positively supporting people and communities. For more information about Lafayette Square, please visit www.lafayettesquare.com.
About Yum! Brands
Yum! Brands, Inc., based in Louisville, Kentucky, and its subsidiaries franchise or operate a system of over 55,000 restaurants in more than 155 countries and territories under the company’s concepts – KFC, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut and The Habit Burger Grill. The Company’s KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut brands are global leaders of the chicken, Mexican-style food and pizza categories, respectively. The Habit Burger Grill is a fast-casual restaurant concept specializing in made-to-order chargrilled burgers, sandwiches and more. In 2023, Yum! Brands was included on the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index and Newsweek’s lists recognizing America’s Most Responsible Companies, America’s Greatest Workplaces for Diversity and America’s Greatest Workplaces for Women. In 2022, the Company was named to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index North America.