Shift Change: Shake Shack, REGO Restaurant add senior marketing execs
This Restaurant Dive series highlights the latest executive changes across multiple chains as they plan their growth strategies for the year.
This is the latest installment in a series that highlights major executive changes at top fast casual, QSR and casual dining chains over the past week.
As restaurants hone in their marketing strategies to increase sales and traffic, many have added marketing executives to their c-suites, such as this week’s new hires at Shake Shack and REGO Restaurant Group. Check out additional new hires and promotions from some of the largest restaurant brands:
Bloomin' Brands: Jeff Carcara was hired as president of Bonefish Grill. He will be responsible for leading operations and development of the restaurant brand. He formerly was the CEO of Del Frisco's Emerging Brands and also served as COO at Del Frisco's Restaurant Group and CEO at Barteca Restaurant Group.
- Jeff Yurecko, former Bite Squad CFO, is now CFO at Waitr effective April 1. Current Waitr CFO David Pringle will be at the company until March 31.
- Damon Schramm, former Bite Squad chief legal and administrative officer, is now the chief legal officer at Waitr effective immediately.
- Kyle Hale, Bite Squad’s former COO, is now the chief of corporate development.
- Bite Squad’s former chief marketing officer Craig Key is now the head of growth for Waitr effective Feb. 1.
- Adam Price, formerly of Homer Logistics, has been appointed as chief logistics officer as of Feb. 1.
- Simon Lee, formerly of Homer Logistics, has been appointed chief analytics officer as of Feb. 1.
Shake Shack: Former BarkBox marketing executive Jay Livingston joined the burger chain as its first CMO. His plan is to focus on guest experiences through digital channels, including the brand’s app, delivery partners and in-store kiosks.
Bojangles': Following its acquisition by private equity firms Durational Capital Management and The Jordan Company, the chain has hired several new executives in recent weeks, including Jose Armario as CEO and Brian Unger as COO. Kenneth M. Koziol, a 35-year restaurant veteran who has worked at Panera and McDonald's, was named as the company’s new chief restaurant support officer, and will focus on supply chain, quality assurance, strategy, menu development, innovation and information technology.
REGO Restaurant Group: Mark Lohmann, former senior executive at Qdoba Restaurant Group, has been hired as chief brand officer, a newly created position for REGO Restaurant Group — which is backed by High Bluff Capital Partners that includes Quiznos and Taco Del Mar. Lohmann will be responsible for marketing, brand strategy, integration and international opportunities across the brand portfolio.
Fazoli’s: Kathy Davidson has been named senior director of franchise sales to help drive growth and development, according to Fast Casual. Davidson previously led franchise development at Cowboy Chicken and Church’s Chicken. Fazoli’s has been focusing on franchise expansion of late, opening 10 restaurants in 2018 — it’s highest number since 2012 — and rolling out a redesign that includes a Wi-Fi bar.
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