Überrito announced that Rick Howard and Ryan Howard have signed on as the company’s initial franchisee with a multi-unit commitment for three future locations in Arizona. The announcement signals Überrito’s focus on growth through several initiatives, including the franchising of its fast-casual, build-your-own burrito concept nationwide.
The father and son team brings a breadth of franchise knowledge to the agreement. Rick Howard is an entrepreneur and franchisee with more than 37 years experience across a multitude of brands, while Ryan Howard is the operating manager of a franchised Pita Jungle that is majority owned by Rick Howard. Throughout his career, Rick Howard has held various roles in restaurant development and operations, as both a franchisee and franchisor, for brands ranging from Pizza Hut, Peter Piper Pizza, Pita Jungle, and several others.
The new franchise locations, once opened, will bring the number of total Überrito locations in the area to five. The first franchise location is slated to open in 2018.
“As professionals, we spend our careers looking for that once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and joining Überrito as a franchisee is exactly that for me and my family,” says Rick Howard, Überrito franchisee. “This is a growing franchise with an unrivaled product and customer experience. As lifelong residents of the greater Phoenix area, we look forward to growing this brand in our hometown and beyond.”
In order to meet growing demand and further its expansion, the company brought on Chief Development Officer Peter Ortiz in April 2017. Ortiz is singularly focused on establishing Überrito as the premier franchise concept in the fast casual Mexican food segment.
“Adding franchisees of this caliber signals our commitment to deliver an exceptional experience for customers and the community as a whole,” says Peter Ortiz, chief development officer for Überrito. “Rick and Ryan have an impressive background in our industry, but perhaps most impressive is their involvement in serving the communities in which they operate. Their focus on quality, growth, and being engaged in the community will be an asset to our mutual growth plans.”
Überrito continues to seek experienced, multi-unit operators and investors to help grow the brand nationally. Single and multi-unit area development opportunities, along with master franchise agreements, are available.
The company currently operates five Houston-area locations and two Phoenix locations, which includes four new restaurant openings since 2016.
Überrito is part of Mexican Restaurants, Inc., which currently operates 45 Mexican restaurant locations across five brands: Überrito, Casa Ole, Monterey’s Little Mexico, Tortuga Mexican Kitchen and Crazy Jose’s. Additionally, there are 10 franchise locations for Casa Ole.