Back Yard Burgers tapped Scott Shotter as its new chief executive officer, the fast casual announced July 17. Shotter arrives from FOCUS Brands’ Moe’s Southwest Grill, where he served as vice president of operations and helped scale the concept from 200 to more than 700 locations during his nine-year tenure. Before that, Shotter oversaw operations for more than 30 national and regional brands, including Starbucks, Sbarro, Popeye’s, Johnny Rockets, and Burger King. Shotter succeeds Doug McDougall, who joined the brand in 2013 when it was emerging from a 2012 bankruptcy filing.
“I’m very excited about these plans and it’s one reason I joined the team,” Shotter said in a release of Back Yard Burger’s proposed new store prototype and plan to reach new customers. “In addition … we’re going to focus on the culinary and service experience Back Yard Burgers provides to our customers. We know that our franchise partners are going to be equally excited and we look forward to rolling out what I believe is a well-planned growth strategy.”
Founded in 1987 in Cleveland, Mississippi, Back Yard Burgers, which has 51 locations across 11 states, announced in July that Axum Capital Partners—a private-equity firm founded in 2010—acquired a controlling interest in the 30-year-old brand from Pharos Capital Group LLC, paving the way for renewed growth. Changes touched the chain’s infrastructure to franchising to menu and supply chain. Twenty-eight of the 51 stores are currently company owned.