Industry News | October 20, 2009

Former Caribou Coffee CEO Joins Upstart Burger Company

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Michael J. Coles joins a group of Boardwalk Fresh Burger and Fries investors as the first of 50 new restaurants opens in February in the Hammond Springs Shopping Center at Roswell and Hammond Drive in Sandy Springs, Georgia (Atlanta metro). Coles is the founder of Great American Cookie Company, as well as the former chairman and CEO of Caribou Coffee, where he remains on the board.

“There has never been a better time to be a tenant looking for locations here in the Atlanta metro area,” Coles says. “In addition to taking down a great site for our own location, we are finding dozens of available A+ locations for potential franchisees and the rents and landlord deals are much, much better nowadays. We are also getting opportunities to convert existing restaurant spaces which mean those restaurants can be built for a fraction of a typical new restaurant.”

“We couldn’t be happier to have an industry veteran like Michael Coles involved with our concept,” says David DiFerdinando, Boardwalk’s CEO. “This is clearly a sign that we are doing things right. I’m excited to see our brand develop in Georgia with Michael’s guidance.”

"Atlanta is a young vibrant city and Boardwalk Fresh Burgers & Fries is a great fit for people looking for a more authentic burger experience in the better burger segment of fast casual dining,” Coles says. “Boardwalk partnering with Fransmart makes me feel even stronger about the brand as it was Fransmart that launched Five Guys franchising and created the foundation that has put Five Guys on the map.”