Schlotzsky’s today announced it has named Back Lot Productions, Inc., an Atlanta-based company specializing in retail design and brand development, as its Vendor of the Year.

Back Lot Production owners, Bart Mills and Tracey Barker, were recognized with the prestigious honor for their creation of the Schlotzsky’s ‘Lotz Better’ prototype design. The first new Schlotzsky’s ‘Lotz Better’ prototype opened in Waco, Texas, in 2010 and was so well-received by customers that Schlotzsky’s corporate executives made the decision to reimage all of its existing 350 restaurants with the same ‘Lotz Better’ design.

“Back Lot Productions is composed of a superior team of talented and creative individuals who hit the mark with the Schlotzsky’s ‘Lotz Better’ prototype design,” Schlotzsky’s President Kelly Roddy says. “They put forth countless hours and tremendous effort to make sure the ‘Lotz Better’ look was a success and because of this, has helped to propel us in the fast-casual restaurant segment. We couldn’t think of a better way to express our appreciation for their design, diligence, and dedication than by recognizing them as Schlotzsky’s official Vendor of the Year.”

Mills, an architect by trade, and Barker, a graphic designer, focused on the unique shape of Schlotzsky’s round bun and created a fun, quirky, and unique look. Additionally, they designed the new logo that incorporates the circle concept. All the new packaging in restaurants, updated business cards, and stationary, as well as the bright, vibrant color scheme was integrated by the duo.

“We are honored to receive this incredible recognition by such a well-known brand in the restaurant industry,” Mills says. “It is wonderful working with Schlotzsky’s to help put ideas into action that will create a great experience for their customers. We look forward to continuing our partnership with Schlotzsky’s for many years to come.”

Kansas City marked the first market to kick-off Schlotzsky’s nationwide reimage initiative in March 2011 with four locations adapting the new ‘Lotz Better’ look. Since then, restaurants throughout Colorado, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, and Washington have revamped with vibrant colors, playful slogans, contemporary furniture and artwork. Schlotzsky’s also has introduced a new service model where crew members hand-deliver food to the tables.

With more than 350 locations worldwide, Schlotzsky’s continues its growth momentum by aggressively targeting markets in Texas and in untapped markets around the country including Charlotte, North Carolina; Denver; Tampa, Florida; Orlando, Florida; Kansas City, Missouri; Nashville; Phoenix; Raleigh, North Carolina; and St. Louis for multi-unit developers. Roddy added that, ideally, Schlotzsky’s plans to have upwards of 700 locations by 2015.

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