Nour Rabai, Founder and CEO of PITA Mediterranean Street Food, announced that his Georgia-based fast casual brand has moved its six corporate locations into franchises. Due to COVID-related changes in the restaurant industry, PITA views franchising as a way to improve operations and profitability while preparing the business for increased growth throughout 2021 and beyond.
âCOVID-19 really opened up the idea of ââselling corporate stores to focus on a bigger vision,â says Rabai. âAlthough it was a difficult time, it allowed us to foresee the future and understand the best decision for PITA as a company. By selling our units and focusing on the group as a whole, we have created a more profitable format for franchisees.
Six corporate restaurants were recently transformed into a combination of new and existing franchisees. Once the franchisees were approved throughout the application process, Rabai and his team underwent a four-week in-house training with the franchisees before proceeding with the takeover.
Due to this new focus, Rabai has focused on menu design and development and the overall growth of the PITA brand. PITA has already opened a new location in Chicago and has a second Chicago restaurant under construction with several more planned. Next month, a new location in Orlando, Florida is slated to open with 11 more to follow this year. Alabama also continues to be an active market for new PITA restaurants in and around Huntsville.
âWith the current pipeline, our top priority is to help franchisees find territory and open in that exact location,â says Rabai.
As for Rabai’s role going forward, he will focus on what he can do for franchisees to help them become more successful. The corporate team will fully support each franchisee in the areas of location finding, marketing, branding, menu development, operations, employment and growth strategies.
PITA is open to adding additional franchisees and is looking for talented individuals who are restaurant industry veterans.
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