FOCUS Brands appoints Kat Cole as Chief Operating Officer and President, North America

ATLANTA, 2017-Jul-03 — /EPR Retail News/ — FOCUS Brands, the franchisor of iconic brands Auntie Anne’s® , Carvel®, Cinnabon®, McAlister’s Deli®, Moe’s Southwest Grill® and Schlotzsky’s®, continues on the path of industry leading growth by today (June 19, 2017) announcing that Kat Cole has been named Chief Operating Officer and President, North America.  In this new position, Kat will lead the company’s domestic franchise brands in addition to its licensing division.

“Leveraging her deep industry experience and track record of achieving step-change in previous assignments at FOCUS Brands, Kat’s thought leadership, broad executive experience and exceptional communication skills position her well to enable our brand leaders to drive our business with accelerated energy,” said Steve DeSutter, CEO, FOCUS Brands. “Those who have ever met Kat know that she is a uniquely skilled leader. She’s purpose-driven and has the demonstrated ability to bridge the worlds of franchising, large global brands, innovation and entrepreneurship with her collaborative management style.”

Paul Damico, who previously held the position of President, North America, has been named Chief Executive Officer of Naf Naf Grill. “Over the past nine years, in his role as President of Moe’s Southwest Grill and most recently as the leader for all of our brands domestically, Paul had made a big impact on our business and helped us achieve impressive results,” said DeSutter. “It has been a pleasure to work with him, and we truly wish him the best as he takes on this next new role.”

FOCUS Brands is poised for growth in the industry. As a leading developer of global multi-channel foodservice brands, FOCUS has more than 5,000 locations globally and is experiencing growth that is being driven by its focus on consumers, technology, and multichannel development to grow existing markets and bring its concepts to new markets in exciting and relevant ways.

Cole joined FOCUS Brands seven years ago as President of Cinnabon and for the past three years has served as President of FOCUS Brands Global Channels group. Cole has had a central role working in partnership with DeSutter to design and deploy the company’s multi-brand and multi-channel operating model designed to accelerate growth by leveraging the strength and collective power of the company’s multiple brands.

“There has never been a more dynamic time for our brands to stand out in their respective categories. Being bold, purpose driven, authentic and results oriented are central to optimizing our opportunities and impact,” said Cole. “I’m thrilled to leverage the company’s talent, technology and capabilities to connect with our fans, stand for something that’s clear and connected through all we are and do, and drive growth of our amazing brands and businesses with our franchisees and licensees.”

Cole has a long leadership history within the industry, including on the Women’s Foodservice Forum (WFF) Board of Directors since 2009, Executive Committee from 2012 to 2015, and Chair of the Board in 2015 and 2016.  She has a deep connection to purpose and global impact through humanitarian work globally, serves as a member of the United Nations Global Entrepreneur’s Council, and participates in organizations and initiatives in the U.S. and in Africa to help individuals and villages elevate themselves out of poverty.

Recognized for her ongoing impact, Cole was named one of FORTUNE Magazine’s “40 under 40”, named to CNBC’s top 25 Disruptors, Innovators and Leaders, and received the Distinguished Young Alumni award from Georgia State University J. Mack Robinson School of Business. She received her MBA from Georgia State University and honorary doctorate from Johnson and Wales University.

About FOCUS Brands Inc.

Atlanta-based FOCUS Brands Inc. is a leading developer of global multi-channel foodservice brands. FOCUS is the franchisor and operator of more than 5,000 ice cream shoppes, bakeries, restaurants and cafes in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and 60 foreign countries under the iconic brand names you know and love: Carvel®, Cinnabon®, Schlotzsky’s®, Moe’s Southwest Grill®, Auntie Anne’s® and McAlister’s Deli®, as well as Seattle’s Best Coffee® on certain military bases and in certain international markets. FOCUS is also the sixth largest food and beverage licensor in the world, extending its brands into alternative channels through grocery, consumer products, foodservice and ecommerce. Please visit www.focusbrands.com for more information.

Source: FOCUS Brands Inc.

FOCUS Brands® announces promotion of Paul Macaluso to President of McAlister’s Deli®

ATLANTA, 2016-Dec-21 — /EPR Retail News/ — FOCUS Brands® has promoted Paul Macaluso to President of McAlister’s Deli®, a leading fast-casual restaurant chain best known for its Big & Bold Sandwiches, Famous Sweet Tea and world class hospitality which was recently ranked as one of consumers’ favorite chains by Restaurant Business.

“By leveraging his extensive restaurant experience, keen consumer insights knowledge and strategic marketing and operating skills Paul will continue to identify and execute against key growth drivers for McAlister’s.  I am confident he will provide leadership to our franchisees and drive continued brand performance in this industry leading concept,” said FOCUS Brands President, North America, Paul Damico.

Paul’s background includes more than 20 years of operations, franchising and marketing experience with some of the most prominent brands in the foodservice industry, including Taco Bell, Burger King, and Sonic Drive-In. Since joining FOCUS Brands in 2011 as Vice President of Marketing for Moe’s Southwest Grill®, Paul has successfully grown into several significant roles within the organization, effectively developing and executing new branding, advancing consumer insights deployment, leading high functioning teams and identifying notable sales driving innovations that have helped the brands continue to deliver superior results.

Most recently, as SVP of Brand Marketing Strategy, Paul led the collective marketing capabilities for all six brands that are a part of FOCUS Brands; developing long term, consumer-driven, strategic planning processes, creating a marketing center of excellence for creative, social media and PR and playing an instrumental role in developing a digital roadmap across the enterprise.

“I am honored to have this opportunity, and excited to lead the great McAlister’s team and brand in its next stage of growth and innovation,” said Paul Macaluso, President of McAlister’s Deli.

About McAlister’s

Founded in 1989, McAlister’s Deli® is a fast casual restaurant chain known for its sandwiches, spuds, soups, salads, desserts and McAlister’s Famous Sweet Tea™. In addition to dine-in and take-out service, McAlister’s also offers catering with a selection of sandwich trays, box lunches, desserts, a hot spud bar and more. With numerous industry accolades, the McAlister’s brand has more than 361 restaurants in 28 states. The company is headquartered in Atlanta, Ga. For more information, visit www.mcalistersdeli.com.

About FOCUS Brands Inc.

Atlanta-based FOCUS Brands Inc., through its affiliate brands, is the franchisor and operator of more than 5,000 ice cream shoppes, bakeries, restaurants, and cafes in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and 60 foreign countries under the brand names Carvel®, Cinnabon®, Schlotzsky’s®, Moe’s Southwest Grill®, Auntie Anne’s®and McAlister’s Deli®, as well as Seattle’s Best Coffee® on certain military bases and in certain international markets.  Please visit www.focusbrands.com to learn more.

Contact:
1.404.255.3250

Franchising Inquiries:
Call 1.800.227.8353

Source: FOCUS Brands Inc.

FOCUS Brands promoted Paul Macaluso to president of McAlister’s Deli

ATLANTA, 2016-Dec-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — FOCUS Brands® has promoted Paul Macaluso to President of McAlister’s Deli®, a leading fast-casual restaurant chain best known for its Big & Bold Sandwiches, Famous Sweet Tea and world class hospitality which was recently ranked as one of consumers’ favorite chains by Restaurant Business.

“By leveraging his extensive restaurant experience, keen consumer insights knowledge and strategic marketing and operating skills Paul will continue to identify and execute against key growth drivers for McAlister’s. I am confident he will provide leadership to our franchisees and drive continued brand performance in this industry leading concept,” said FOCUS Brands President, North America, Paul Damico.

Paul’s background includes more than 20 years of operations, franchising and marketing experience with some of the most prominent brands in the foodservice industry, including Taco Bell, Burger King, and Sonic Drive-In. Since joining FOCUS Brands in 2011 as Vice President of Marketing for Moe’s Southwest Grill®, Paul has successfully grown into several significant roles within the organization, effectively developing and executing new branding, advancing consumer insights deployment, leading high functioning teams and identifying notable sales driving innovations that have helped the brands continue to deliver superior results.

Most recently, as SVP of Brand Marketing Strategy, Paul led the collective marketing capabilities for all six brands that are a part of FOCUS Brands; developing long term, consumer-driven, strategic planning processes, creating a marketing center of excellence for creative, social media and PR and playing an instrumental role in developing a digital roadmap across the enterprise.

“I am honored to have this opportunity, and excited to lead the great McAlister’s team and brand in its next stage of growth and innovation,” said Paul Macaluso, President of McAlister’s Deli.

About McAlister’s

Founded in 1989, McAlister’s Deli® is a fast casual restaurant chain known for its sandwiches, spuds, soups, salads, desserts and McAlister’s Famous Sweet Tea™. In addition to dine-in and take-out service, McAlister’s also offers catering with a selection of sandwich trays, box lunches, desserts, a hot spud bar and more. With numerous industry accolades, the McAlister’s brand has more than 361 restaurants in 28 states. The company is headquartered in Atlanta, Ga. For more information, visit www.mcalistersdeli.com.

About FOCUS Brands Inc.

Atlanta-based FOCUS Brands Inc., through its affiliate brands, is the franchisor and operator of more than 5,000 ice cream shoppes, bakeries, restaurants, and cafes in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and 60 foreign countries under the brand names Carvel® , Cinnabon® , Schlotzsky’s® , Moe’s Southwest Grill® , Auntie Anne’s® and McAlister’s Deli® , as well as Seattle’s Best Coffee® on certain military bases and in certain international markets. Please visit www.focusbrands.com to learn more. Founded in 1989, McAlister’s Deli® is a fast casual restaurant chain known for its sandwiches, spuds, soups, salads, desserts and McAlister’s Famous Sweet Tea™. In addition to dine-in and take-out service, McAlister’s also offers catering with a selection of sandwich trays, box lunches, desserts, a hot spud bar and more. With numerous industry accolades, the McAlister’s brand has more than 361 restaurants in 28 states. The company is headquartered in Atlanta, Ga.

For more information, visit www.mcalistersdeli.com.

Media Contact:

Melissa Smith
McAlister’s Deli
(404) 705-4449
melissasmith@focusbrands.com

Source: McAlister’s Deli

FOCUS Brands announces commitment to sourcing ingredients that contain only cage free eggs

ATLANTA , 2016-Aug-09 — /EPR Retail News/ — In response to a growing consumer sentiment towards cage free eggs and the adoption of this policy by several other food service companies, FOCUS Brands is joining forces with others in the industry and announcing its commitment to sourcing ingredients that contain only cage free eggs.

While not a large user of eggs or food items with egg as an ingredient, FOCUS Brands will work with its suppliers to ensure that all of its restaurant menu items will contain only cage free eggs by 2026.

“In addition to industry trends and the growing consumer preference for cage free eggs in other channels such as grocery, today we are casting our vote with consumers and will work toward meeting these new supply standards.” said Rich Kamph, Senior Vice President of FOCUS Brands Global Supply Chain.

About FOCUS Brands Inc.
Atlanta-based FOCUS Brands Inc., through its affiliate brands, is the franchisor and operator of more than 5,000 ice cream shoppes, bakeries, restaurants and cafes in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and 60 foreign countries under the brand names Carvel®, Cinnabon®, Schlotzsky’s®, Moe’s Southwest Grill®, Auntie Anne’s®and McAlister’s Deli®, as well as Seattle’s Best Coffee® on certain military bases and in certain international markets.  Please visit www.focusbrands.com to learn more.

Contact:

Karlie Lahm
FOCUS Brands Inc.
404-705-4411
klahm@focusbrands.com

Source: FOCUS Brands Inc.