Quick-service restaurant chain Tahini’s, based in London, Ontario, which serves Middle Eastern cuisine, made its first investment in bitcoin in August 2020 when it cost around $12,000 per token. Despite recent drops, the world’s biggest cryptocurrency by market capitalization traded at over $56,390 early Tuesday morning, nearly five times higher than last year’s figures. The owners of Tahini’s say the decision to invest all profits in the crypto token “has worked like a charm.”
“We’re up, to date, 460% on our initial investment and we didn’t stop there. We will continue sweeping excess profit into bitcoins,” the chain’s chief marketing officer and one of the founders, Ali Hamam, told Business Insider.
Tahini’s is possibly the world’s first restaurant chain to invest all of their money reserves in cryptocurrency. The owners say the investment helped their business expand during the pandemic, when many similar businesses were forced to shut down. It also helped them through the ensuing inflation, which resulted in higher prices for the ingredients of some of their main dishes.
“The main problem that we have right now is that dollars are devaluating. Central banks will say inflation is only 5%. But that really depends on what you want to buy. Poultry is up 45%, beef is up 25%, imported goods and spices are up 65%, oils are up 110%. So it made sense to put our money into [bitcoin] and that will outstrip any inflation rates we see for the coming decade,” Hamam said.
The firm works according to a “bitcoin-standard strategy,” operating in fiat currency and then investing all profit into bitcoin. It doesn’t accept bitcoin for restaurant orders, as it is easier to do accounting and tax reporting in fiat money. The chain does not disclose how much bitcoin it currently holds. However, it did reveal that sales at its eight restaurants over the past year exceeded $8 million.
The firm is set to add nine more locations in 2021, eventually planning to expand to 29 restaurants. Tahini’s also has bitcoin ATMs in every restaurant to encourage both customers and employees to invest in crypto.
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