Bob Evans Farms has named Mark A. Mears as president and chief concept officer of Mimi’s Cafe, effective April 18, 2011.
Mears comes to Mimi’s Cafe from The Cheesecake Factory, a $1.7 billion upscale casual dining chain with 164 total restaurants, where he has served as senior vice president and chief marketing officer since 2008.
Prior to that, from 2006 to 2008, he was senior vice president of marketing and sales at Universal Studios Hollywood, a unit of NBC Universal.
From 2003 to 2006, he served as executive vice president and chief marketing officer at Blimpie International, a 1,600-unit restaurant chain that offers custom-made sandwiches. He also served for six years at Pizza Hut, Inc., a division of Yum Brands, in various marketing capacities.
In addition, Mears has worked for some of the world’s premier advertising agencies, including Leo Burnett, DDB and Euro RSCG Retail.
“We are excited to have Mark join our team at Mimi’s Cafe,” Steve Davis, chairman and CEO of Bob Evans. “His experience in brand positioning and marketing at some of the country’s top advertising agencies and restaurant chains will be essential to our efforts to generate profitable top-line growth at Mimi’s.
“He also has a proven track record of improving brand awareness and developing innovative sales-driving programs in challenging economic conditions. His primary focus will be to improve sales and profitability at Mimi’s 145 restaurants.”
Mears has a bachelor’s degree of science from the University of Kansas and a master’s degree in advertising and integrated marketing communications from Northwestern University.