During this period, restaurants and retail centers accounted for most of Bentley’s projects. Work continued with the General Mills Restaurant Group on Olive Garden, Red Lobster, and York’s Choice (a retired brand) restaurants. Bentley also worked on numerous locations for Jack in the Box, Hardee’s, and Friendly’s.In its first three years, Bentley completed about 80 restaurant projects.
The nationwide workload required Bill to become a licensed Professional Engineer throughout the US and Puerto Rico and to hire more staff; in 1986, the company had as many as 26 employees.
With General Mills as Bentley’s best business reference, contracts with other private restaurant labels came readily. Clients at this time all shared an intense demand for meeting extremely aggressive project schedules. There were many long nights that often extended into the next day, but Bentley’s staff always succeeded in achieving the clients’ goals. These intense schedules and all-night marathons became the norm for the staff.