Zunzi’s, the Savannah-based fast-casual concept known for its South African-inspired sandwiches, bowls and salads, has promoted Ryan Harrison to the position of chief operating officer for Zunzi’s and its beach-bar sister concept, Zunzibar.

In his new role, Harrison is charged with developing programs to grow the Zunzi’s and Zunzibar brands, establishing operational systems to maximize efficiency, forging strategic partnerships and nurturing existing relationships with investors, vendors and other stakeholders, and providing the tools for the company to meet and exceed its sales and financial goals.

“Zunzi’s is a fantastic company and a fantastic concept,” says Harrison. “In general, the restaurant business sucks, but it doesn’t have to be. I joined Zunzi’s because it’s different from other restaurants. Our culture and mission revolve around inspiring others to become the best version of themselves. It’s exciting to be a part of a franchise with purpose and to be able to expand this positive culture even further.

“Ryan is smart, talented and focused,” says Zunzi’s owner Chris Smith. “He knows this business, and he knows Zunzi’s inside and out—our corporate culture, our values and our mission. He is 100% the right guy to help set us up for long-term success and ensure that our partners and our guests leave Zunzi’s saying ‘Shit yeah.’”

Harrison most recently served as Zunzi’s director of operations and catering. Before joining Zunzi’s, he helped launch Gusto!’s catering program, eventually serving as that concept’s director of B2B and community development.

Emerging Concepts, Fast Casual, News