Industry News | June 1, 2010

Salsarita's Grows and Looks to Expand

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Salsarita's Fresh Cantina, a fast-casual Mexican restaurant chain, is exploring strategic alternatives to fuel expansion of the rapidly growing franchise. With new locations opening across the country, Salsarita's is quickly gaining brand recognition and a reputation for its quality and legendary hospitality.

"Despite the economy, we've been performing very well with three consecutive months of sales increases and a doubling of non-traditional locations in the last two years, among other development accomplishments," says Bruce Willette, chairman of Salsarita's Fresh Cantina. "This financial success allows the brand to now explore strategic alternatives to help expand our business operations."

Interested parties are invited to learn more about Salsarita's franchising entity, corporate store operations and real estate holdings, which total more than $10 million in revenue. Specifically, its real estate holdings include headquarters office, training store, and an additional 16,000 square feet of retail and office space, 12,000 of which are leased.

The company is approaching its first 100 restaurants with the goal of having 200 open and operating by the end of 2014. This year, non-traditional locations have opened at Auburn University in Alabama and Lowe's Home Improvement Corporate Offices in Mooresville, North Carolina. Additional non-traditional units are scheduled to open at University of North Carolina-Greensboro, Louisiana State University, and Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). Recent traditional openings include locations in Tyler, Texas, and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, with plans for restaurants in Puerto Rico and Overland Park, Kansas, opening by early summer.

"There have been numerous mergers and acquisitions in the restaurant world over the past three to four months, making us one of the only organic, fast-casual, Fresh-Mexican chains remaining that have not benefitted from a strategic partnership," Willette says.

In 2009, Salsarita's experienced great success with new restaurants opening in Charlotte and Greenville, North Carolina, Clarence, New York, Jacksonville, Florida, Murfreesboro and Knoxville, Tennessee, and other markets around the country.

In addition, new development agreements were signed for the opening of more than 15 locations in the U.S., and the company was recently ranked 42nd by Nation's Restaurant News and Chain Store Guide's list of fastest growing chain restaurant operators over the past five years.

For additional information please contact Bruce Willette at Bwillette@salsaritas.com or 704-622-2169.