You remind me a lot of myself. I opened a sandwich shop when I was 18 years old, and had my older brother and sister work for me.
In my case it wasn't a franchise shop, and I did it with very, very little money I had saved. A short 6 months later and I was no longer in business.
But it was a great experience!
Now on to an answer to your questions. In today's economic climate, business financing is a bit tricky.
First, Lenders will want to know what experience you bring to the table. In the absence of either you or your friend having experience in the business, you can possibly hire an experienced Manager to help run the business.
However, your biggest hurdle will be the lack of assets. Lenders will want you to have some "skin in the game", as they say. They feel better if you have something to lose too.
Otherwise, if it flops you just walk away, washing your hands of it, while they're on the hook for all of the money. And it makes sense when you think about it from their point of view.
If you have money in the deal, you will work harder to ensure the business succeeds. And not only money at the start, but they will want to see that you have enough assets to sustain the business for a certain, fixed period of time.
Because they understand it takes time for a new business to become profitable. So, when you say you have "little assets", what exactly does that mean?
Another possibility is you bring in a partner who has money, AND has experience running a restaurant too. Both would help to satisfy the Lender.
And, you can make arrangements in advance to buy out your partner at a certain point when the business becomes profitable.
I'm sorry, I know it's not the answer you're looking for. But, as someone who helps business owners and Entrepreneurs like yourself get the money they need for their business, I felt it best to tell it to you like it is.
One final thought. Do you have a business plan? You will need one. Even though my answer does not seem positive, you always want to be prepared.
You never know what opportunities life will bring you, and when they will show up. But, you can always be prepared.
After all, "good luck" is nothing more than being prepared when an opportunity arrives. So, my advice is to prepare as if you will be getting the money you need to start your business.
Finally, take a look at this great resource. Go and visit http://www.CommercialMortgageTips.com
I commend you for wanting to open your own business. Being an Entrepreneur is a wonderful way to live your life. Our Country was built by people just like you, Entrepreneurs who wanted more for their families.
Best of luck!