Granite City Food & Brewery Ltd. announced that Richard H. Lynch (Dick), a member of its Board of Directors, has been appointed as the company’s Chief Executive Officer. Interim CEO, Rob Doran, will continue to serve as a member of Granite City’s Board of Directors. Lynch is a restaurant industry veteran who served as the Chief Brand Officer for Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen for the past nine years. Lynch architected the brand transformation that led to Popeyes’ resurgence in the QSR space, and ultimately, its acquisition by Restaurant Brands International, Inc. earlier this year. He brings with him a wealth of branding expertise and experience in leveraging brand differentiation to drive topline sales as well as a proven track record in assembling quality, results-oriented teams. During Lynch’s tenure Popeyes achieved: 8 consecutive years of same-store sales growth; Market share increase from 13% to 27%; Annual unit volume (AUV) increase of 45%, from $1 million to $1.45 million; Restaurant level profitability increases from 17% to nearly 24% and Unit growth from 1,860 locations to nearly 2,700. “Our search focused on identifying a leader with top-level branding expertise to unlock the potential for this dynamic concept and bring it into the future. We were fortunate that Dick’s expertise was already known to us as he has served on our board the past 15 months,” said Fouad Bashour, Chairman of the Board for Granite City Food & Brewery. “Dick has demonstrated an appreciation for the potential of our brand. That, together with his expertise, will be invaluable as we elevate the Granite City brand profile.” “I am honored to have the opportunity to unleash the untapped potential of this brand,” said Lynch. “Granite City is one of the originators of the craft brew trend, and one of the only places where you experience brew-culture at its most authentic coupled with a chef-created, made-from-scratch, distinctive menu. I believe the Granite City experience is unique in its space. I look forward to leveraging the brand to drive a differentiated employee and guest experience as well.” – Source: Granite City Food & Brewery.
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