Industry News | July 1, 2013
Great Wraps Welcomes New Member of Executive Team
Great Wraps, an Atlanta-based hot wrapped sandwich, grilled sandwich, and fresh salads concept, has recently brought on Matthew DeBusk as vice president of brand development to lead its rebranding efforts and franchise expansion. “We and our entire franchise system are thrilled to have Matt join our Team," says Mark Kaplan, chairman of Great Wraps Inc. “He brings proven franchise experience and is already making a huge impact at all levels of the organization."
While Kaplan recognizes that bringing on a key new member of any executive team can be a hit or miss proposition, he says he knew the instant he met DeBusk that they saw eye to eye. "I had heard about Matt from his days at Moe’s Southwest Grill and asked him initially to spend thirty minutes with me to provide feedback on our Great Wraps rebranding and franchise expansion efforts," Kaplan explains. “But the more we talked about where Great Wraps was headed, the more I realized that the person that should lead the way was right in front of me."
Over the next several weeks, DeBusk helped Kaplan map out the framework for Great Wraps brand reimaging, menu refinements, franchise support systems, strategic expansion plans, and probably most exciting for Great Wraps, a greater focus on expanding their new hoodless cooking operation to college campuses, airports, and military bases. “After the full immersion into our brand, it was just a natural move to bring Matt on board to lead our expansion and rebranding efforts, and we are excited about the opportunity this presents to our entire organization."
DeBusk’s new role will primarily be to focus on driving franchise growth via new and existing partnerships, however it will also include exploring how Great Wraps may best appeal to individual consumers and families focused on fresh, healthy, and flavorful fast casual dining options.
"Our guests already demand a high quality product, which is why we prepare each sandwich and salad to order using the best ingredients available," DeBusk says. "However, I believe Great Wraps is well positioned to broaden its appeal to a younger market and be more relevant in today's competitive marketplace. The brand has always been unique, healthy, and fast, but our focus moving forward will be on what today's consumer is demanding, which is flavor. We are a brand that is thriving at the intersection of 'Flavor and Health', which has become very valuable real estate in the quick-service food segment. I’m thrilled to play a roll in getting this message out to a much larger market."
In his past, DeBusk had been a long-term member of Moe's Southwest Grill's executive team, initially supporting store operations and then moving on to franchise development. He then assumed a lead role in the franchise development of Shula's Steak House and Shula Burger restaurants. "I see this as a remarkable opportunity to work with a dynamic team and accelerate the growth of this niche brand into a national powerhouse franchise system," DeBusk says. "The unlimited opportunity for the Great Wraps organization and our franchise partners makes this a truly exciting time."
Great Wraps has been serving made to order hot wraps, grilled sandwiches, and fresh salads for over twenty-five years and has over eighty locations in more than fifteen states. The brand was acquired in 1989 by partners Mark Kaplan and Bob Solomon, former top-level executives at The Coca-Cola Company, and has been focused on delivering quality to consumers and franchisees ever since that time. With a renewed focus on growth and excellence, Kaplan and Solomon expect Great Wraps will see explosive growth over the next five years, and they welcome franchise inquiries nationwide.
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