Leadership

Billionaire restaurateur: Trump is doing a great job

Self-made billionaire and restaurateur Tilman Fertitta says Donald Trump is going to help America because he is going to help American business.

"Taking so much power away from the government and putting it back in business is going to be great for American capitalism," says Fertitta, the star of CNBC's "Billion Dollar Buyer." "And why is America great? One reason: American capitalism."

Fertitta is worth nearly $3 billion and has 60,000 employees spread across his restaurant and casino empire. The CEO got his start peeling shrimp in the back of his father's restaurant in Galveston, Texas.

In particular, Fertitta is encouraged to hear Trump talk about getting rid of regulations, which he says hamper growth.

Tilman Fertitta, entrepreneur and host of Billion Dollar Buyer.
Adam Jeffery | CNBC
Tilman Fertitta, entrepreneur and host of Billion Dollar Buyer.

"There's been so much regulation in all aspects of the government over the last eight years that to deregulate all this regulation is going to be very good for the oil business, the energy business, the restaurant business," says Fertitta.

The CEO points out that there are always some issues when one kind of administration ends and another begins. Considering that, "I think Trump has done fine so far. Everybody has him under a microscope," he says. Apart from the typical growing pains, "I think he's doing a great job."

"Taking so much power away from the government and putting it back in business is going to be great for American capitalism." -Tilman Fertitta , CEO of Landry's

Fertitta adds that, while Trump has made some controversial decisions in his first months in the White House, including implementing a travel ban on immigrants coming from several predominantly Muslim countries, he has largely been following through on promises he made during his campaign.

"He is doing what he said he was going to do when he was running and that is something that people usually don't do," says the CEO. "So I congratulate him for trying to do what he said he was going to do."

In addition to deregulation and stricter immigration policies, Trump has said he will repeal and replace Obamacare. That is a welcome change, in Fertitta's view.

"Obamacare does not work. I have 60,000 employees. I know it does not work. Other people talk about it. I know," says Fertitta. According to the billionaire restaurateur, the Affordable Care Act fails because individuals sign up only when they need to see a doctor.

"I congratulate him for trying to do what he said he was going to do." -Tilman Fertitta, CEO of Landry's

While Fertitta is largely encouraged by Trump's bold steps since arriving in the Oval Office, he also says it's really too early to know for sure whether Trump's legacy will be positive or negative for the country as a whole.

"It's too early to tell with what he has done or is going to do has an effect on anybody yet," says Fertitta.

And Fertitta isn't the only business person who is encouraged by Trump's pro-business agenda. Wall Street has been largely rallying since Trump took office, and that's encouraging in Fertitta's eyes, too. "Obviously the capital markets like what he is doing since the stock market continues to go up, so that's a very good positive."

Check out 12 hard-earned life lessons from a self-made billionaire who started with a $6,000 loanand Self-made billionaire Tilman Fertitta shares his best advice for 20-somethings