TGI Fridays food on a table.
TGI Fridays

TGI Fridays has more than 650 restaurants worldwide. 

TGI Fridays Names Brandon Coleman III CEO

The executive wants to jumpstart growth by leaning into what the brand does best—serving as the destination for all of your bar and grill needs. 

TGI Fridays announced Tuesday that Brandon Coleman III has been promoted to CEO ahead of what the brand hopes is a "transformative next phase revitalizing the brand."

The 40-year-old industry veteran is taking over for Ray Blanchette, who led the brand for nearly five years, but stepped down in May. Rohit Manocha, co-founder and chairman of TGI Fridays majority owner TriArtisan Capital Partners, served as interim CEO. 

“I am incredibly proud to be named Chief Executive Officer of TGI Fridays and lead this incredible brand,” Coleman said in a statement. “TGI Fridays is entering a new era of growth and prominence that will build on our beloved tradition and the emotional connection of great food and drinks along with the fun and entertainment that only TGI Fridays can do. I thank Mr. Rohit Manocha, our board of directors, and the team at TriArtisan Capital Advisors for their confidence in me and I am looking forward to working with our franchisees and our company owned restaurants to lead TGI Fridays into a new chapter.”

Coleman, who joined the company in October 2022 as U.S. president and CMO, plans to leverage TGI Fridays' equity in the bar and grill space with creative cocktails, key partnerships, and competitive offers across beer, wine, spirits, and the rising nonalcoholic segment. Each of these strategies will be used to created a differentiated experience that will win celebratory occasions from friends and family, the company said. 

The executive has already made progress on these goals. Coleman was responsible for the chain's biggest menu change since the 1990s with its Grilled & Sauced platform. Additionally, he helped launch Krispy Rice, a virtual brand concept developed by food technology company C3. The chain said the digital brand has "contemporized the TGI Fridays menu" and "broadened its customer appeal." The new CEO also played a role in in opening the new location at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, which is on track to earn $14 million in annual revenue, making it the highest volume unit of any U.S. airport restaurant. 

Before coming to TGI Fridays, Coleman served as senior vice president and CMO of Dave & Buster's, worked in various leadership roles at Del Frisco's Restaurant Group, and spent time as CMO of Romano's Macaroni Grill and as CEO and management consultant of Brava Partners. In 2013, Coleman was named one of Ad Age’s 40 Under 40.

“Brandon has proven time and time again that innovation layered on top of rich brand history is the key to sustained and impactful growth,” Manocha said in a statement. “Since first coming to the company as our Chief Marketing Officer, following a storied career in the restaurant industry, Brandon has been driving greater relevance and stronger connection with today’s consumers. TriArtisan Capital Partners believes in the future of TGI Fridays and we know what it takes for this restaurant to win. We are thrilled to continue this journey and we are confident that Brandon is the right person to lead TGI Fridays into its strategic next phase.”

TGI Fridays, which claims to be the world's first casual bar and grill, operates and franchises 650-plus stores worldwide in 52 countries. In 2022, it earned $1.6 billion in systemwide sales, with U.S. comps lifting 8 percent versus 2019. In September 2022, the brand unveiled its biggest franchise deal in company history. The agreement calls for 75 new franchised restaurants throughout South and Southeast Asia in the next 10 years, representing $500 million in incremental revenue