Nation’s Restaurant News | May 10, 2023
Mo’Bettahs Hawaiian Style Food has signed an endorsement with Tony Finau, a six-time PGA Tour champion, including the recent 2023 Mexico Open at Vidanta, and one of the stars of the Netflix docuseries “Full Swing.” This marks the first celebrity endorsement for the 15-year-old brand and it comes as Mo’Bettahs targets aggressive expansion.
There are currently 42 Mo’Bettahs locations across six states and 14 more in development, including in new markets like Arizona, Nevada and Nebraska. The Hawaiian-style, plate-lunch concept experienced $2.1 million in average unit volumes in 2022 and marked its fifth straight year of same-store sales growth.
“We are honored to have Tony join our ‘ohana,” Kimo Mack, Mo’Bettahs’ co-founder, said in a statement. “I’ve followed Tony’s career since the early days and have been rooting for his success. He’s repped the Polynesian culture so beautifully. Mo’Bettahs is all about food and family, and we’re proud to partner with someone who appreciates and loves the islands as much as we do.”
The company said this endorsement is natural and authentic, as Finau has been a fan of the brand for years.
“Tony has family in the islands and his wife is from there as well, so there is a genuine shared love of Hawaiian food, culture and community,” a spokesperson said. “The timing worked out beautifully as Mo’Bettahs is in an explosive growth phase. As we open in new markets, it will be exciting for Finau fans across the country to experience their favorite golfer’s Mo’Bettahs plate lunch.”
As part of this collaboration, Mo’Bettahs will feature Finau in its marketing collateral, including across social media, email and loyalty campaigns. The chain will also work with the Tony Finau Foundation, which strives to inspire “the next generation to discover, develop, and achieve their goals.” Mo’Bettahs will offer “Finau’s Favorite” plate – the Teri Chicken, Pulehu Chicken, mac salad and rice – in which a portion of the proceeds will go to the foundation. The company said there will be more opportunities to partner with the foundation in the future, as well.
“Mo’ Bettahs has been my go-to for a long time,” Finau said in a statement. “[Co-founders] Kimo and Kalani Mack have created the true taste and experience of eating in Hawaii. I’m thrilled to join the Mo’ Bettahs team and am proud to partner with them as they expand across the country.”
Mo’Bettahs was founded in Bountiful, Utah, in 2008 by Kimo and Kalani Mack. The concept was acquired by Savory Fund in 2017 and named Rob Ertmann as president in 2021.
“It’s been incredible to watch this partnership come to fruition. It’s not often that an endorsement comes together as authentically as this one did,” Andrew K. Smith, managing partner and co-founder of Savory Fund, said in a statement. “Tony is the perfect ambassador, and we can’t wait for people across the country to fall in love with Mo’ Bettahs like we did. This is truly a win for both teams.”