El Pollo Loco Opens its Doors in Cumming, the Seventh of 50 Planned Restaurants in the Greater Atlanta Area

El Pollo Loco Opens its Doors in Cumming, the Seventh of 50 Planned Restaurants in the Greater Atlanta Area

Former Church's Chicken, Cinnabon Execs Bring Leading Flame-Grilled Chicken Brand to Cumming

April 17, 2008 // Franchising.com // COSTA MESA, CA – Atlanta has a new flame, and Cumming is about to "ignite" it! Restaurateurs Chris Elliott and Joe Uhl of Fiesta Brands, Inc. will open the doors to the Southeast's seventh El Pollo Loco on Thursday, April 17th at 10:00 a.m. in Cumming. El Pollo Loco, Inc., a leading franchise of more than 390 fast casual restaurants, is famous on the West Coast for its signature citrus-marinated, flame-grilled chicken served with warm tortillas, assortment of delicious sides and fresh salsas, along with a wide variety of fresh, contemporary Mexican-inspired entrees.

The new Cumming El Pollo Loco is located at 2045 Market Place Blvd. near Buford Dam Road. The restaurant is around 2,400 square feet and offers bright, comfortable seating for nearly 60 guests. It employs approximately 40 new hires from the local community and is open seven days a week, from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The restaurant offers drive-thru service, in addition to dine-in and take-out service. Catering for special events and celebrations is also available.

Cumming's new El Pollo Loco restaurant highlights the chain's famous fresh, citrus-marinated chicken as it cooks on the grill and features an open dining area with flexible seating that encourages customers to relax and enjoy the unique El Pollo Loco dining experience. A focal point of the dining room is a self serve salsa bar featuring a variety of salsas that guests can use to customize their menu selections. All of the salsas are prepared fresh every day.

The Cumming location marks the seventh of 50 El Pollo Loco restaurants that Fiesta Brands, Inc. plans to open in the greater Atlanta area. The first five Atlanta-area El Pollo Loco restaurants opened in the latter half of 2007 in the cities of Hiram, Gainesville, Marietta, Lithia Springs, and Roswell. A sixth location opened in Lithonia on April 10th and additional El Pollo Loco restaurants are scheduled to open over the next two years in Smyrna, Chamblee, Stockbridge, Douglasville, and other sites to come.

"We are delighted to continue El Pollo Loco's Southeast expansion right here in Cumming," said Chris Elliott, CEO of Fiesta Brands, Inc., who along with partner Joe Uhl, COO of Fiesta Brands, Inc., and their company is bringing the locations to Atlanta. "Georgians who have experienced El Pollo Loco while traveling out West are thrilled to now be able to enjoy the mouthwatering taste of our citrus-marinated, flame-grilled chicken here locally. And for those who have never tried El Pollo Loco, it will be love at first bite."

Fiesta Brands, Inc. will develop the remainder of its locations over the next six years. Partners Chris Elliott and Joe Uhl are both 30-year industry veterans. Elliott, CEO of Fiesta Brands, is the former COO of Church's Chicken and former President of Cinnabon. Uhl, COO of Fiesta Brands, is the former President of JRM, the largest Cinnabon franchise partner during his tenure with the company.

"No one else does what El Pollo Loco does with its fresh, natural citrus-marinated chicken grilled over an open flame. Simply put, El Pollo Loco has the best tasting food in the entire chicken category; nothing comes close in terms of flavor and food quality," said Elliott. "El Pollo Loco truly has the whole package – a healthy dining option with the freshest ingredients and exceptional customer service. We're excited to bring the concept to Cumming and other locations in the Atlanta area. Based on our research, the region is primed and ready for El Pollo Loco."

Founded in Guasave, Mexico in 1975, El Pollo Loco, pronounced "L Po-yo Lo-co" and Spanish for "The Crazy Chicken," opened its first U.S. restaurant in 1980 and is famous for the unique preparation of its award-winning "pollo"-- fresh chicken marinated in a special recipe of herbs, spices and citrus juices passed down from the founding family. The marinated chicken is then flame-grilled, hand cut and served hot off the grill with warm tortillas, freshly prepared salsas, and a wide assortment of side dishes. Rounding out the menu are fresh flavorful entrées inspired by the kitchens of Mexico, including signature, grilled burritos, Pollo Bowl® entrees, Pollo Salads, Tacos al Carbon, quesadillas, and more.

About El Pollo Loco®

El Pollo Loco currently operates 395 restaurants (233 franchised locations and 162 company-owned locations) in California, Arizona, Nevada, Texas, Colorado, Illinois, Georgia, Connecticut and Massachusetts. Headquartered in Costa Mesa, California, El Pollo Loco, Inc. is a privately held company owned by Trimaran Pollo Partners, LLC and management. The principal investors in Trimaran Pollo Partners are funds affiliated with Trimaran Capital, LLC and Freeman Spogli & Co. For more information about El Pollo Loco®, visit the company's website at www.elpolloloco.com.

This news release contains forward-looking statements, which are statements that do not relate solely to historical fact. They include, but are not limited to, any statement that may predict, forecast, indicate or imply future results, performance, achievements or events. They may contain words such as "believe," "anticipate," "expect," "estimate," "intend," "project," "plan," "will," "should," "may," "could" or words or phrases of similar meaning. The statements reflect management's current expectations regarding future events. Risk factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, concerns about food-borne illnesses; increases in the cost of chicken; an adverse ruling from the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in litigation involving El Pollo Loco S.A. de C.V. (El Pollo Loco- Mexico) which could result in the imposition of significant monetary damages and loss of rights to the trademarks in Mexico; our dependence upon frequent deliveries of food and other supplies; our sensitivity to events and conditions in the greater Los Angeles area; our reliance in part on our franchisees; our vulnerability to changes in consumer preferences and economic conditions; our ability to compete successfully with other quick service and fast casual restaurants; and other risk factors listed from time to time in the Company's reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as the result of new information, future events or otherwise.



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