Personnel Updates

Another Broken Egg of America, Inc. announced the appointment of Jan Barnett as the company’s new Chief Marketing Officer and Joanne Patterson as its new General Counsel.

Dickey’s Barbecue Restaurants, Inc. announced Barry M. Barron, Sr. has been hired as the company’s new COO.

Domino’s Inc. has named Judy L. Werthauser Exec VP and Chief People Officer.

East Coast Wings & Grill has announced the promotion of Stacey Kane to Chief Marketing Officer.

Famous Dave’s of America Inc. has named Adam Wright CEO.  Mr. Wright previously held this position on an interim basis since June of 2015.

HPC Foodservice announced that Barry Pearson has retired as President and CEO of the company. Jim Charbonneau and Richard Lotstein have been named Co-Presidents.

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers Inc. has named Jonathan Muhtar as Senior VP and Chief Marketing Officer.

Sysco Corporation announced that Tom Bene has been promoted to President and COO.

Taco Bell Corp. has promoted Marisa Thalberg to the role of Chief Marketing Officer.

TGI Fridays has named Robert Palleschi as its new President and CEO.

Twin Restaurant Holding LLC announced Scott Gordon has been named President, Franchise Operations, Jim Saunders has been named VP, Company Operations, Beth Collins has joined the company as Chief Marketing Officer, and Stephen Martin has joined the company as VP, Human Resources.

White Castle Management Co. announced that longtime CEO Bill Ingram will be retiring and his daughter Lisa Ingram will take his place.

Yum! Brands Inc. announced David Novak is stepping down as Chairman, effective in May.


Mergers and Acquisitions

US Foods has acquired Dierks Waukesha, a Waukesha, WI-based regional distributor.


Industry Insight

Così Inc. has restructured operations and plans to close four restaurants.

Gordon Food Service is expanding their presence in Plant City, FL, which will generate 100 new jobs and add about 160,000 sq. ft. of cold storage & distribution space.

Papa John’s International Inc. announced that it plans to serve chicken that has been raised without the use of antibiotics and fed a completely vegetarian diet.  This move, which will begin next summer, makes Papa John’s the first national pizza chain to shift towards healthier poultry sourcing.

Sonic Drive-In signed franchise agreements to open 33 new drive-ins in California over the next seven years.

SpartanNash announced that it has signed a long term contract to be the primary wholesaler to Gordy’s Market.

Starbucks Corp announced it plans to open 500 stores in China this year.

Greens Restaurant Group LLC is moving its headquarters to Los Angeles, CA. The company will still operate both of its Washington, DC, and New York offices, while continuing to increase locations along the East Coast.


Real Estate

Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. announced a new agreement with franchisee, United States Beef Corporation, to develop 70 new locations through 2022.

Hurricane Grill & Wings recently opened its first California location in the city of Antioch. The company also signed a development agreement to expand throughout the region.

Tropical Smoothie Café recently opened its first restaurant in California. This is part of the company’s overall plan to expand in the state with more locations coming to Rancho Cucamonga, Foothill Ranch, Irvine, Mission Viejo, Ladera Ranch, Fountain Valley, Orange and Rancho Santa Margarita. This year, Tropical Smoothie plans to exceed 575 restaurants nationwide and sign 200 franchise agreements.

Wingstop announced a deal with restaurant management company Sizzling Platter LLC for 35 new franchise stores in Utah, Virginia, and Washington, DC.