CASE STUDY: Jinya Ramen Bar

Accurate Financials Turned Around Quickly Without Expensive Staff Hires

 

How JINYA Holdings Raised the Bar With RRFMG & Restaurant365

 

Since its establishment in 2010, JINYA Holdings has experienced remarkable growth within its restaurant portfolio. As the parent company of JINYA Ramen Bar, JINYA Ramen Express, bushi by JINYA, Robata JINYA, and LBD Japanese Bar & Lounge, it proudly operates six corporate locations while supporting nearly 60 franchise locations. The organization’s impressive success led to its founder Tomo Takahashi being recognized in 2022 by Nation’s Restaurant News as one of America’s most influential restaurant CEOs.

Rapid expansion, however, made it challenging for their outsourced accounting firm to keep pace with JINYA Holdings. Consequently, the accuracy, timeliness, and consistency of fiscal reporting fell behind. In some cases, it took JINYA Holdings up to 6 weeks to receive their financial statements following close of period.

Shortly after being hired as VP of Finance, Joe Cloud prioritized finding a replacement for their accounting services provider. He conducted an exhaustive search in Southern California, and eventually was referred by their auditing firm to Restaurant & Retail Financial Management Group (RRFMG). RRFMG’s extensive portfolio of restaurant clients combined with its founder Wayne Lipschitz’s industry expertise, convinced Joe that RRFMG would be a good fit for JINYA Holdings.

RRFMG immediately got to work by migrating JINYA Holdings from QuickBooks to Restaurant365 (R365). The migration involved two different entities (holding company & franchise business), each with separate tax filings and separate financial calendars. RRFMG made the transition to R365 seamless, first by migrating the corporate restaurant business, then the franchise restaurant business. That enabled JINYA Holdings to make their financial calendars more consistent across the organization, including having one based on a retail closing cycle. The implementation of R365 allowed JINYA Holdings to reduce the time it takes to consolidate financials from hours into seconds.

With R365 properly deployed, RRFMG then began populating sales information with real-time data flowing directly from store POS systems. This brought Joe Cloud’s team one step closer to addressing CEO Takahashi’s biggest priority – acquiring a real time understanding of JINYA Holdings’ financials. Prior to RRFMG’s engagement, there was no visibility into that information until their outsourced accounting provider made sales entries at month end.

Next, RRFMG’s R365-trained staff began regularly processing a number of other accounting tasks for JINYA Holdings:

• Collecting accounts receivable from credit card merchant processors and third party delivery providers, and franchisees
• Paying vendors, reconciling Invoice statements, and issuing 1099s
• Booking all expenses
• Cash reconciliations
• Bank statement reconciliations
• Managing the company working papers and business filings, and more

“Accounting processes are now much more methodical. When RRFMG sees something that raises concerns about meeting closing times, they’ll communicate that to us one to two weeks in advance.” says Joe Cloud.

As a result, financial statements are now delivered in as little as 7 business days following close of period, and JINYA Holdings is as close as they’ve ever been to being able to generate a snapshot of their restaurants’ financial picture on a weekly basis.

Even better, JINYA Holdings has been able to avoid hiring additional in-house accounting staff since engaging with RRFMG despite the company’s rapid growth, saving the company an estimated $250k/year in salary, benefits, etc.

Joe Cloud states “I feel more comfortable at night knowing they’re doing the work and we don’t have to have a full time controller. I think a lot of folks our size, where they have a few units or maybe a franchise business model, could potentially avoid adding a few positions using RRFMG. We’ve saved a controller’s salary worth of expenses, but also we’ve avoided having to build an internal team too, which would be quite a bit more expensive”.

Joe Cloud continues to say “They’ve not only reduced the headache in our business with respect to reporting, but I think they’ve also raised the bar for us in terms of the overall accounting and reporting process. They’ve also improved us, kept us in check, kept us on timelines, and overall have allowed us to continue to move forward despite having a pretty small team.”