Is Benedetto Ben Catarinicchia of ZACS International a NY Bagel Scam Profiteer?

Is Benedetto “Ben” Catarinicchia of ZACS International a NY Bagel Scam profiteer?  Or is he just an honest, hardworking architect who specializes in planning, designing, and building NY Bagel Café franchise locations that will never open or will likely close shortly after opening?
(NY Bagel Scam)  Ben Catarinicchia of ZACS International thinks it’s very unfair that our group is calling him out as a NY Bagel Scam profiteer.

He will likely think it’s doubly unfair when we question the integrity (or at least judgment) of ZACS International associates Tricia Hutman, Interior Designer, Mike Upchurch, Architect, and David Kroth, Web and Marketing (if they are, in fact, real people).

But when an individual or professional firm brags about its connection with another firm or brand, why would it be unfair to scrutinize the implications of that connection?

And if a company or individual profits from their association with an illegal and/or immoral enterprise (Well sure we made millions selling gas chambers to Hitler and the Nazis, but we didn’t KILL anybody!), is it wrong to ask them to defend their contribution to the pain and suffering of others?

Is it wrong to ask architect Ben Catarinicchia of ZACS International why he feels justified paying the mortgage on his family’s nice, comfortable home with money he took from NY Bagel Scam victims whose own homes were foreclosed upon?

What Ben Catarinicchia Must Know About the NY Bagel Café Scam

NY Bagel CafeAccording to architect Ben Catarinicchia of ZACS International, he is a long-time associate of and vendor for NY Bagel Café franchise scam and its principals, CEO Joseph “Joe” Smith & Dennis Mason.

According to Ben, his Burlington, NJ Zacs International has “worked as a preferred consultant for the franchise for many years, completing our first location design, I believe, in early 2012… we have completed over 50 locations nationwide.”

It Ben Catarinicchia has completed work on 50 NY Bagel Café franchises, he obviously knows that more than 80 of those have closed up (there are fewer than 10 listed on the website).

It seems hard to believe that he doesn’t know that NY Bagel’s Dennis Mason and Joe Smith regularly lie to franchisees about the number of franchises that have failed.

It seems hard to believe that he doesn’t know that the NY Bagel franchise documents represent that there are ZERO NY Bagel stores have closed – a point of fraud that has been documented in state investigations and lawsuits.

It seems hard to believe that Ben Catarinicchia doesn’t regularly come in contact with many franchisees who paid tens of thousands of dollars in fees and never opened a franchise.

And Ben Catarinicchia must know that his photographs of past NY Bagel Café stores that closed are regularly used in their franchise advertising as if they are open and thriving, and that closed stores are sometimes listed for years as still open on the NY Bagel website in order to mislead prospective franchisees.

Questions for Ben Catarinicchia about the Tracy, California NY Bagel that he Profited From

Dear Ben:

The Tracy, CA NY Bagel Café is very attractive.

Here is the design scheme you put together: Zacs International NY Bagel

Here is the Extensive Equipment List it appears you sourced for the owner Amber R.:

NY Bagel Scam Equipment List


Here are a few questions:

  • Did you know that the documents given to prospective franchise owners do not comply with FTC regulations, making the sale of NY Bagel Café franchises, in essence, illegal?
  • Are you aware that 15 states require franchise registration or filing, and that NY Bagel Café is not legally registered in any of them?
  • Are you aware that NY Bagel Café was not registered in California, and sold your client Amber R. an illegal franchise?
  • Are you aware that Amber R. is a military veteran and the widowed mother of two boys, and that she paid you and the other vendors from her husband’s life insurance policy and a loan she secured with her family home?
  • Are you aware that her NY Bagel Café store closed 5 months after it opened, that she lost $500,000, that the bank foreclosed on her home and she was forced to move into a friend’s basement with her two boys?
  • How much of Amber’s husband’s life insurance money did she pay you for the architectural drawings?
  • What was the total you billed her for expenses – and added a 25% mark-up?
  • How much was the mark up this extensive equipment package that you sold her?
  • How much money, in total, of Amber R’s family’s finances did you receive? 
  • Are you aware that Dennis Mason and Joe Smith use the Tracy store picture in their marketing, and kept it on the location list for two years after it closed?
  • Do you know that they tell people it closed because Amber R.’s husband died AFTER the store opened and she lost her mind… when in fact he had died two years earlier and she worked the store every day they were open?
  • At any point, did it occur to you to warn her of the high risk nature of NY Bagel Café, or mention to her that 40 out of 50 stores you had built had failed?
  • Why do you tell prospective franchise owners that NY Bagel is a trustworthy company, and that the owners “do well” when you know that the overwhelming majority will fail and lose their investments?
  • You stated that you would recommend the NY Bagel franchise opportunity to a friend or family member… Have you done that?  Would you invest in one yourself?
  • With over 50 NY Bagels designed and built, including the recent Tracy, CA store and Doral, FL store, why don’t you feature more than the Houma, LA location on your website?
  • Are you OK with the fact that the majority of the stores you design will likely fail and the majority of owners who were tricked into NY Bagel Café franchises will lose their investments?
  • Are you proud of your association with NY Bagel, Joe Smith & Dennis Mason?

It looks like UnhappyFranchisee.Com has erected a gallery of your work here:

NY BAGEL CAFÉ Franchise Graveyard


NY Bagel Café Franchise Scam Overview

NY BAGEL SCAM Victims Are Speaking Out!


How NY BAGEL CAFÉ Hides its Franchise Failures Part 1

How NY BAGEL CAFÉ Hides its Franchise Failures Part 2

Joe Smith, Dennis Mason & NY Bagel Café Franchise Exposed: 10 Things You Should Know

NY BAGEL CAFÉ & DELI Franchise Complaints




TAGS: Ben Catarinicchia, ZACs International, NY Bagel, NY Bagel Cafe, NY Bagel Cafe & Deli, NY Bagel Scam, NY Bagel franchise scam, NY Bagel Cafe Scam, NY Bagel Craigs List, Joe Smith, Joseph Smith, Dennis Mason, scam, fraud, NY Bagel rip-off

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