American Blue Ribbons Holdings, LLC announced the appointment of W. Craig Barber as president. In his new role, Barber will have responsibility for all restaurant and support operations which includes the O’Charley’s and 99 Restaurant & Pub casual dining brands along with the Village Inn and Bakers Square family dining brands. ABRH owns 474 restaurants and franchises 96 franchised locations along with Legendary Baking which serves baked desserts and custom bakery items to restaurants, grocery retailers and others across the United States.
Barber most recently was a Denny’s franchisee and served for 10 years as Chair of the Denny’s Franchisee Association Board where he led a collaborative effort for alignment of priorities to create value and improve performance with the collective brand results validated by consistent same store sales growth and improvement of operating margins by over 4 percent over five years. He has also worked extensively with various private equity ownership groups in brand elevation, operational turnaround and restructuring situations since 2000.
“We are pleased to announce the appointment of Craig Barber as president of the ABRH management team,” says chairman William P. Foley, II. “Craig’s twenty plus years of experience in brand strategy & elevation and operational improvement along with acquisition & divestitures will be instrumental in improving the performance of the ABRH family of restaurants.”
“I am excited to be associated with each of these extraordinary brands and provide strategic leadership to support our teams in delivering great food and outstanding hospitality throughout all of our operations,” Barber says. “I look forward to working with our operational and support center leadership teams with a focus on elevated performance within our unique consumer propositions for each brand. I also look forward to engaging with our franchisees in support of their commitment and investment in the brands.”
American Blue Ribbon Holdings, LLC (ABRH) is comprised of 307 casual dining restaurants and 167 family dining restaurants with 96 franchised locations along with the Legendary Baking operations which produces more than 24 million desserts per year at its bakeries in Oak Forest, IL, Chaska, MN and Santa Ana, CA.
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