C3 (Creating Culinary Communities), a revolutionary food and beverage platform founded by Sam Nazarian, welcomes Thomas Negrel to its corporate team as chief operating officer of EllaMia, the coffeeshop/bakery concept and C3’s newest brand. Negrel will oversee all business development for EllaMia and guide revenue strategy to elevate the in-store and virtual customer experience.

Negrel brings a diverse resume to his new role, including a background in international business and finance, with a focus on acquisitions and corporate investment within the restaurant space specifically. As chief operating officer of EllaMia, Negrel will oversee the growth of the sophisticated coffeeshop/bakery concept into high-profile markets across the U.S., including Southern California, Chicago, and Seattle. Each EllaMia concept will also incorporate a C3 shared digital kitchen to provide all-in-one catering, dine-in, and takeout options, allowing the new brand to expand at scale while compounding each location’s business opportunity. As the concepts grow in both reach and popularity, Negrel will be responsible for identifying and implementing strategies that maximize the revenue and operational capabilities for EllaMia as well as the additional C3 brands it supports through its ghost kitchens. 

“Thomas Negrel brings creative vision and an efficient, methodological approach to management, making him the ideal candidate to launch EllaMia in North America,” says Sam Nazarian, founder and CEO of C3. “He understands where we want to take the concept in terms of geographic growth while also introducing new consumers to C3’s full portfolio of brands. With Negrel on board, EllaMia is certain to grow in a systematic, organic, and organized manner that delivers exceptional culinary experience at every brand level.”

In his most recent position as vice president of finance for Specialty’s Café and Bakery, Negrel spent three years developing and enhancing the company’s core systems to bring simplicity and efficiency to its workflow. He led financial planning and development for 50+ Specialty’s locations across three states, managing more than $100 million in annual revenue. Negrel was essential in designing and executing Specialty’s five-year development road map and created the company’s budgeting process, efforts he seeks to extend to EllaMia.

“I enjoy bringing order into chaos and there has never been a more chaotic time to launch a restaurant brand,” says Thomas Negrel. “It’s a well-calculated moment: there are many decent concepts out there, but EllaMia is offering a more interesting coffeeshop experience for consumers at a time when people are hungry for something fresh. This is an opportunity to elevate both EllaMia, and the various C3 brands which will operate out of our ghost kitchens. I’m excited to work alongside the incredibly talented C3 team to build greater culinary experiences for the communities we’re in.”

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