Le Duff America Inc., the North American subsidiary of the world’s second largest restaurant company in the café-bakery sector, Groupe Le Duff SA, announced the appointment of Stefanie Rakes as the director of development for nontraditional venues. In this role, Rakes takes responsibility for growing Le Duff’s la Madeleine Country French Café, Brioche Dorée and Bruegger’s Bagels brands in nontraditional foodservice venues such as those in airports, universities, and transportation centers. She brings a strong track record of success developing brands in these settings.
“Stefanie continues our trend of adding top-tier talent to Le Duff’s development team,” says Claude Bergeron, chairman and CEO of Le Duff America Inc. “She’s incredibly talented and knows the restaurant industry intimately. As the Le Duff family of brands pursues its growth goals, adding seasoned professionals like Stefanie is a primary focus.”
Prior to joining Le Duff, Rakes spent several years at Yum! Brands developing Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, and KFC in nontraditional locations such as airports, toll roads, travel plazas, colleges and universities, stadiums, and various other venues. Most recently, she was part of the Pizza Hut International team where she managed the nontraditional development of Pizza Hut Express around the world. Prior to Yum!, Rakes spent five years at Johnson & Johnson in various sales, marketing, and analytics management roles.
“There is a tremendous buzz enveloping the Le Duff America brands right now,” Rakes says. “It’s a thrill to be part of such an inspired group of colleagues at the development office that is second to none. I look forward to increasing our presence in a number of attractive destinations.”
Rakes received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Texas at Austin. Working from Le Duff’s corporate headquarters in Dallas, she currently resides in the Dallas area.