The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc., the world’s premier fondue restaurant and a leading polished casual dining franchise, announced Friday the signing of its largest development agreement in the brand’s 42-year history—a 17-unit deal to expand the brand’s presence in Mexico. GINgroup, one of the largest privately held companies in Mexico, will develop 17 new Melting Pot restaurant franchises throughout the country over the next seven years. Additionally, GINgroup has reached a separate agreement to purchase the three Melting Pot franchises currently operating in Mexico City. GINgroup’s next restaurant will be located outside of Mexico City, in a yet to be determined market, and is slated to open in 2018.

“The Melting Pot is a prestigious restaurant concept in the U.S. and abroad, and GINgroup is excited to partner with the brand to expand its presence in Mexico,” says Raúl Beyruti Sánchez, chief executive officer of GINgroup. “This agreement is a strong pairing of American flavor with Mexican culture, which will enrich the culinary offerings available at The Melting Pot Mexico restaurants. We’re also proud to strengthen our commitment to our local communities throughout the country by creating employment opportunities. There’s no doubt this is a union of two companies committed to hard work and success.”

Founded in 1980, the GINgroup provides a myriad of businesses with comprehensive, state-of-the-art human capital management solutions with more than 50 offices located throughout Mexico. The group’s restaurant division is comprised of 58 restaurants including franchise concepts such as Carl’s Jr., Texas Ribs and Rustic Kitchen. Following the first opening in 2018, GINgroup plans to open 16 additional Melting Pots throughout Mexico, from coast to coast, including restaurants in Mexico City, Monterrey, Querétaro, Puebla, Guadalajara, Cancun and Metepec.

“We’re thrilled about this agreement and the tremendous growth GINgroup has committed to over the next seven years,” says Dan Stone, chief business & people development officer at Front Burner, the management company of The Melting Pot. “The Melting Pot is already a proven concept that enjoys a strong reputation in Mexico, as demonstrated by the tremendous guest loyalty and positive social media commentary about the three existing locations in Interlomas, Satélite and Pedregal. Teaming up with GINgroup, an established franchise partner that not only has the experience and infrastructure, but also shares our corporate values and principles, will help us to further grow and accelerate the development of The Melting Pot brand throughout the country.”

A nod to its name, The Melting Pot is known worldwide for providing a blend of traditional and modern fondue—incorporating both global and local flavors. While each restaurant will be similar to U.S. locations and offer the brand’s core base menu items, The Melting Pot’s new Mexico locations will feature recipes infused with local flavors and ingredients, such as Manchego cheese from Queretaro and chocolate from Puebla.

The Melting Pot operates more than 120 restaurants across 35 U.S. states, Canada, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. The concept is known for offering an assortment of flavorful fondue cooking styles and a variety of unique entrées served with signature dipping sauces. The menu features a variety of à la carte selections, highlighting customizable options that invite guests to enjoy one, two, three or more courses as they select any combination of individually-priced cheese fondues, salads, entrées and chocolate fondues.

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