Former Wingstop Executive Brings 25 Years of Experience and Relationships to Help Grow the Popular Juice and Smoothie Brand
Los Angeles, CA (RestaurantNews.com) Robeks, the popular destination for creatively crafted fresh smoothies, juices, acai bowls and more, today announces the next phase of its aggressive franchise efforts with the appointment of industry veteran Todd Peterson to the newly created position of Chief Development Officer. Peterson will oversee all aspects of the company’s franchise development and market expansion.
“Robeks boasts stronger unit-level economics than many brands in this segment and with impressive same-store-sales results and a solid base of profitable restaurants across multiple states, the company is very well positioned to accelerate growth. I couldn’t be more excited for the opportunity to lead the development efforts for this iconic brand,” said Todd Peterson.
Peterson’s background includes more than 25 years of experience directing domestic and international franchise restaurant development for both full and limited-service brands. Most recently he served as the vice president of franchise development for Wingstop Restaurants, a leading 1,700-unit publicly traded global restaurant brand.
“The strength of our brand, the appeal of our category, and the return on investment for Robeks franchisees were key to helping us attract someone of Todd’s caliber. We are very excited to have Todd join the Robeks team to lead and accelerate our development efforts in both new and existing markets,” said David Rawnsley, president and CFO of Los Angeles-based Robeks.
In 2021 Robeks marked its 25th anniversary and the company has reinforced its foundation to set the stage for the next 25 years. Menu innovation with premium toasts, including various avocado and nut butter versions, have helped attract new guests and drive sales. Expansion into new markets has increased the company’s footprint across the United States. The company’s top 25% locations now have industry-leading annual unit volumes exceeding $1 million*.
“Robeks has the world’s best franchisees who deliver every day for every guest with enthusiastic customer service and a commitment to exceptional quality, and with Todd’s leadership we look forward to significantly and meaningfully growing our system,” said Rawnsley.
Robeks, which celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2021, is a preeminent leader in the wholesome juice and healthful smoothie category using fruits and vegetables at the peak of their freshness for a delicious taste and quality nutrients. Also known for its fresh Acai bowls and now adding premium toasts, Robeks continues to innovate with creatively crafted flavor combinations with fresh, high quality ingredients that make people happy. With more than 100 locations open and in development across thirteen states and the District of Columbia, Robeks continues its stellar growth with franchise opportunities in select markets across the country. For more information, visit www.robeks.com and for franchising details visit www.robeksfranchise.com.
* This number represents the average net sales for the top 25% stores for the 52-week period ended 12/26/2021 (“Fiscal Period”). See Item 19 of our Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD) for more information, including net sales date for all stores for all traditional Robeks stores in operation during the Fiscal Period. Your results may differ. There is no assurance that you will earn as much. The franchise sales information here does not constitute an offer to sell a franchise. An offer of franchise can only be made through the delivery of an FDD. Certain states require that we register the FDD in those states. The communications here are not directed by us to the residents of any of those states. Moreover, we will not offer or sell franchises in those states until we have registered the franchise (or obtained an applicable exemption from registration) and delivered the FDD to the prospective franchisee in compliance with applicable law.
Acclaimed gourmet hot dog, sausage and burger concept teams up with seasoned restaurateur to support franchisees during supply chain crisis
Pasadena, CA (RestaurantNews.com) Committed to supporting its franchisees during good times and difficult times, Dog Haus is providing a new resource for its operators as a way to battle the uncharacteristic, industry-wide supply chain shortage.
The acclaimed gourmet hot dog, sausage and burger concept is partnering with industry leader and Principal of Prime Costs, LLC Tim Perreira to help with all tasks related to the supply chain, including purchasing, logistics, vendor relations, product development and operational efficiency. By enlisting Perreira as a consultant, Dog Haus continues to strive for excellence by improving in all areas of its business model.
“Dog Haus is dedicated to offering top-notch services that position our franchisees for success,” said Dog Haus Partner Hagop Giragossian. “We want to change the trajectory of the current operating environment and not allow industry supply chain shortages to be an ongoing issue for our brand. So, we’re being proactive and supporting our current operators by teaming up with Tim. He’s a strategic leader with extensive experience, and we look forward to having him work with us as we reach new solutions that will enhance our overall business.”
A seasoned restaurateur, Perreira boasts more than 45 years of industry experience spanning full-service and casual dining, bakery and cafés, fast casuals, wholesale bakeries and commissary operations. Over the course of his career, Perreira pioneered the position of head of purchasing and product development for a fast-growing public corporation and was the pivotal corporate officer involved in Chart House Restaurants’ revitalization efforts in the late ‘90s, working directly with prominent executives at the Lettuce Entertain You group. He has held various positions such as vice president of food & beverage standards, vice president of concept development and vice president of food and beverage at popular public and private restaurant brands.
Over the past two years, Perreira has played an essential role at Islands Restaurants in leveraging long-term supplier relationships to help navigate pandemic-related challenges.
“The restaurant industry has endured an uncharacteristic supply chain crisis over the last couple of years, and it doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon,” Perreira said. “Dog Haus is taking action during this time to solve problems that we aren’t used to seeing. I’m honored to work with them to provide additional support during this critical time.”
About Dog Haus
Dog Haus is an award-winning concept known for its gourmet hot dogs, sausages, burgers, plant-based and fried chicken offerings, creative full bar program and The Absolute Brands. Founded by longtime friends Hagop Giragossian, Quasim Riaz and André Vener, the first Dog Haus opened in Pasadena, California in 2010. Dog Haus was honored with Nation’s Restaurant News’ prestigious MenuMasters Award and has been named in Fast Casual’s Top 10 Movers and Shakers list since 2020. The brand continues to garner critical acclaim for its signature all beef dogs and hand-crafted sausages with no added nitrates, and 100% Black Angus beef burgers – all of which are made with hormone- and antibiotic-free meat and served on grilled King’s Hawaiian rolls. With its mission to sustainably feed everyone who walks through their doors, Dog Haus also offers a diverse lineup of plant-based burger, sausage and chicken creations. While establishing itself as a “haus”-hold name, the brand has helped raise enough funds from its innovative collaboration with high-profile chefs to feed over two million kids in need through its national charity partner No Kid Hungry. For up-to-date location and brand information, visit doghaus.com or follow Dog Haus on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram @DogHausDogs.
Chris Cheek, a restaurant franchising veteran, will steer growth and development for the operator of 48 better-for-you fast-casual restaurants across the two brands.
By Heather Lalley on May 24, 2022
Modern Restaurant Concepts, the parent company of fast casuals Modern Market Eatery and Lemonade, hired Chris Cheek as chief development officer, the franchisor announced Tuesday.
Previously, Cheek led development efforts at FAT Brands, Global Franchise Group, Newk’s Eatery and Topper’s Pizza. He has also served as VP of franchise development for Freebirds World Burrito and Le Duff America.
“I believe in the MRC mission, the craft behind the food and that we will be one of the great growth stories of our time and beyond,” he said in a statement. “I’m passionate about helping companies at MRC’s stage of growth and I’m looking forward to working with the leadership team to write the next chapter in the company’s history.”
Leaders prove critical to brand’s aggressive growth and guest experience strategies
Athens, GA (RestaurantNews.com) Zaxby’s, the premium quick-service restaurant brand founded in Athens, announced today that industry franchising veteran Mike Mettler has been named chief development officer, while former interim Chief Digital & Technology Officer Mike Nettles has been elevated to the position long-term.
“These are seasoned executives who have achieved great success within some of the most recognizable brands in our industry,” said Bernard Acoca, CEO. “With development and digital strategies central to our growth, I am confident that both are the right people to move our brand into the next phase.”
Mike Mettler brings with him significant experience and expertise in the areas of franchise recruitment and development. He joins Zaxby’s from Orangetheory Fitness where he has spent the past four years leading franchise development, serving as chief development officer for the last three. Prior roles include seven years in senior franchise development for Dairy Queen and four years for Domino’s Pizza.
“Zaxby’s is focused on DMA prioritization, developing a more robust recruitment platform and delivering options that provide flexibility while maximizing profitability,” Acoca said. “Mike Mettler will guide these targets, cultivate relationships and collaborate with our franchisees to continue scaling the brand.”
“Franchising growth requires four things,” said Mettler. “A strong business model, a solid culture, passionate franchise owners and strategic areas to develop – Zaxby’s has them all.”
In addition, former interim Chief Digital and Technology Officer Mike Nettles will move into the position long term. Nettles joined the brand in 2021 with a focus on developing a strong digital infrastructure that improves guest experience. He is leading the development and design of the new mobile app, loyalty program and ecommerce platform that are set to launch in summer 2022.
“Mike Nettles has made incredible strides in advancing our efforts to provide guests with a personalized digital experience,” Acoca said. “We are thrilled to welcome him as a long-term addition to our executive leadership team and look forward to fully transforming the Zaxby’s guest experience under his leadership.”
Prior to Zaxby’s, Nettles spent thirty years in the retail and hospitality sectors, holding leadership positions at Papa John’s and Panera Bread where he was responsible for leading the technical design, development and implementation of digital and in-store assets.
“We are working to remove all the friction between our guests and their cravings to the point where the tech is totally transparent and entirely under their control,” said Nettles. “Zaxby’s has had a great ride thus far, but digital accessibility will be our ‘secret sauce’ for the next phase of our fantastic growth story.”
Founded in 1990, Zaxby’s is committed to serving delicious chicken fingers, wings, sandwiches and salads in a fun, offbeat atmosphere where customers are considered friends. For the second year in a row, Zaxby’s iconic Signature Sandwich won Thrillist’s 2022 Fasties Award for Best Fried Chicken Sandwich. Zaxby’s has grown to more than 900 locations in 18 states and is headquartered in Athens, Georgia. For more information, visit zaxbys.com or zaxbysfranchising.com.
ATLANTA, May 19, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Focus Brands®, parent company of iconic brands including Auntie Anne’s®, Carvel®, Cinnabon® and Jamba®, announced today the appointments of four senior leaders on the specialty category leadership team, including three internal promotions.
Effective immediately, the following executives will be leading these key business functions within the company:
- Kerri Christian, SVP of Specialty Category Marketing
- Tracey Young, Chief Brand Officer, Cinnabon
- Jim Salerno, Chief Brand Officer, Carvel
- Jessica Osborne, VP of Marketing, Carvel
“As a leader, it is an honor and privilege to see colleagues continue to grow their career within a company while also having the opportunity to recruit top tier talent to further build our business,” said Kristen Hartman, Specialty Category President. “With strong leadership we are well-positioned to continue to grow our brands and increase customer preference in today’s competitive market.”
Kerri Christian has been promoted to SVP of Specialty Category Marketing. Kerri previously served as VP of Marketing & eCommerce for Focus Brands Global Channels Licensing Division, where she worked to bring the company’s iconic brands to grocery stores, eCommerce platforms, restaurants and other distribution channels through product innovation and partnerships. In her new role, Kerri will focus on digital engagement, strategic initiatives, innovation, and media across Auntie Anne’s, Carvel, Cinnabon and Jamba. Prior to joining Focus Brands, Kerri served in marketing leadership roles at The Home Depot, The Wendy’s Company and Procter & Gamble.
Tracey Young joins the company as Chief Brand Officer of Cinnabon. In this role Tracey will oversee marketing and operations for Cinnabon. Her forward-thinking vision, paired with the expertise of the current brand leadership team, will be critical as the iconic Cinnabon brand continues to evolve and grow. A restaurant industry veteran, Tracey most recently served as the Vice President, Strategy, Retail Operations at Panera where she led multiple cross-functional teams to drive restaurant operations strategies. Prior to Panera, she spent time at Dine Brands and Bloomin’ Brands leading various operations and finance functions.
Jim Salerno has been named Chief Brand Officer of Carvel. Prior to his promotion, Jim was Vice President & General Manager of the brand. He joined Carvel in 1998, and, over the past 24 years, he has been an integral part of the Carvel franchise system and brand team. In his new role, Jim will drive the brand’s marketing and operations functions with a focus on upholding the longstanding tradition of Carvel Soft Serve.
Jessica Osborne has been promoted to the VP of Marketing for Carvel. Jessica has been with Focus Brands for more than 12 years, serving in marketing roles for McAlister’s Deli® and, most recently, leading Strategic Initiatives on the Specialty Category Marketing team. Jessica will lead the team focused on consumer marketing for the Carvel brand, overseeing menu strategy and innovation, digital, off-premise and marketing calendar initiatives.
About Focus Brands
Atlanta-based Focus Brands® is a leading developer of global multi-channel foodservice brands. Focus Brands, through its affiliate brands, is the franchisor and operator of more than 6,400 restaurants, cafes, ice cream shoppes, and bakeries in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and over 55 foreign countries under the Auntie Anne’s®, Carvel®, Cinnabon®, Jamba®, Moe’s Southwest Grill®, McAlister’s Deli®, and Schlotzsky’s® brand names, as well as the Seattle’s Best Coffee® brand on certain military bases and in certain international markets. Please visit www.focusbrands.com to learn more.
Longtime company executive takes on new role to advance partnerships and new business opportunities
Syracuse, NY (RestaurantNews.com) BeerBoard – the leader in technology and automated business intelligence for the on-premise retail industry – today announced that Josh Solomon has been named the company’s vice president of channel partnerships.
Solomon has spent the last 16-plus years in various positions with the company, including sales, client relationship management, client support and service and product validation/R&D. Most recently, Solomon focused his efforts to support BeerBoard’s National Accounts Division for concepts such as Buffalo Wild Wings, Twin Peaks, Main Event, World of Beer, TGI Fridays, American Social, Abby’s, Grub Burger Bar (now Hopdoddy Burger Bar), FAT Brands, Reach Restaurant Group and Smokey Bones, among others.
Working closely with BeerBoard’s retail client-partners, Solomon has helped them realize the benefits of BeerBoard’s full technology stack, with an emphasis on automated ordering, automated inventory and industry insights/data.
“With the national rollout of SmartOrders and the integrations with scores of industry partners, we now need to dedicate a person to manage the success of our fast-growing Channel Partnership Network,” said John Boyle, BeerBoard’s Senior Vice President of Business Development. “With his industry knowledge and vast relationships, Josh is the right person to step into this role and drive the growth of our channel partnerships.”
“BeerBoard’s proven track record of success, coupled with our strong retail, brewer and distributor relationships, it is the right time to branch out to other industry providers and stakeholders to promote mutual benefits to the industry as a whole,” Solomon said. “We are excited to continue our next phase of growth through the expansion of current relationships and formation of new industry partners.”
BeerBoard’s robust client list features high-profile independent groups and major chain operators across North America. Retailers include industry leaders Buffalo Wild Wings, Hooters, Twin Peaks, WingHouse, Mellow Mushroom and TGI Fridays. BeerBoard also partners with major brewers including Molson Coors, Boston Beer, Constellation Brands, Lagunitas, Heineken, Diageo and Yuengling.
BeerBoard is the leading technology and Automated Intelligence company enabling the food & beverage industry to make business decisions about its complete bar business. It manages over $1 billion in bar sales and 55,000 products through its industry-leading solution. The company’s patented digital platform captures, analyzes, and reports real-time data related to bar performance, brand insights, ordering and inventory. Built for retailers, brewers and distributors, the versatile platform is easily operated from a single dashboard, and it has streamlined operations and increased top and bottom-line revenue all over the United States. Find out more about how BeerBoard is changing the bar industry through data-based business decisions at beerboard.com.
New CIO brings 25+ years of executive experience overseeing IT functions
Columbus, OH (RestaurantNews.com) With a focus on continuing its growth in all areas of the business and enhancing its digital presence, Donatos has hired information technology leadership veteran Steven Graves as Chief Information Officer effective May 17, 2022.
“I am thrilled to announce that Steven will be joining our family,” said Kevin King, President of Donatos. “He is a proven information technology executive with over 25 years of experience overseeing all IT functions. He is a results-oriented leader, who is passionate about developing high performance cultures to enable strategic business outcomes.”
Graves, who will oversee the IT department and report directly to King, has held numerous senior executive leadership positions including most recently as the Vice President of IT at Walmart/Sam’s Club, Inc. where he created an environment predicated on innovation, reliability, experimentation, and prototyping. Prior to that, Graves was the Vice President of Enterprise Technology & Cloud Services Automation at American Airlines where he led customer facing technologies and designed and built enterprise cloud capabilities.
“I am excited to join the Donatos family,” said Graves, who resides in Central Ohio with his wife and two children. “Donatos is a well-respected, iconic brand and staple of the Ohio community led by passionate family owners with the highest standards of excellence.”
Graves has a degree in Business Management and is a member of both the National Retail Federation and American Management Association.
Donatos features the Edge to Edge® pizza, created by Jim Grote who founded Donatos in 1963. With 391 locations in 22 states, Donatos and its franchise partners operate 169 traditional restaurants in Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Virginia, West Virginia, South Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Florida. Donatos’ products are also proudly served in 222 non-traditional locations (212 locations with Red Robin, nine sports and entertainment venues, and one REEF Kitchen). For more information about Donatos, visit www.donatospizzafranchise.com, like on Facebook or follow on Twitter and Instagram.
Clean Juice, the first and only national USDA-certified organic juice bar franchise and quick-service restaurant announced today it has hired Tripp Setliff to Chief Operating Officer (COO). In the role, Tripp will oversee all store operational initiatives including development, supply chain, training, and field support to grow average unit sales volumes and profitability, while Clean Juice continues its explosive expansion across the United States.
Tripp is a veteran fast-casual, quick-serve franchise restaurant executive having worked with Jersey Mike’s Subs and Cici’s Pizza brands. Tripp’s franchise operations, development, and marketing experience led him to executive leadership roles at Driven Brands, Inc. and Business Network International where he most recently held the role of Vice President of Global Marketing.
“I am extremely humbled and thankful for the opportunity to join such an amazing company focused on offering clean, all organic food options to people across the nation,” said Setliff. “As a North Carolina native, I am proud to be a part of the Clean Juice family, where my aligned core values and professional experience will be utilized to continue growing Clean Juice into a household name while embracing the brand’s mission of “Healthy in Body, Strong in Spirit” for all people and communities.”
From a leadership development standpoint, Tripp will be tasked with continuing the brand’s significant impact on the quick-serve restaurant segment while exploring new ways to support the implementation of scalable and efficient models. Clean Juice recently announced the signing of its 200th unit in less than 7 years and is on track to reach 500 in a record-setting time. Tripp’s goals not only focus on location growth but mentoring and creating a team of health-minded professionals to take Clean Juice into the next era of its amazing story.
“Kat and I are very proud to welcome Tripp and his family to our Clean Juice family,” said Landon Eckles, CEO of Clean Juice. “Tripp brings a level of expertise, drive, and passion that is reflective of our core values, and we are inspired by his commitment and vision as Clean Juice continues a historic growth march and storied journey.”
Tripp earned both a Bachelor of Science and Master of Business Administration degree from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va. When Tripp isn’t working on fine-tuning the operations at Clean Juice, he is found coaching his children’s sports teams or on an outdoor adventure exploring North Carolina’s majestic Blue Ridge mountains with his family.