January 29, 2010 // Franchising.com // MANHATTAN, NY – Energy Kitchen, a fast-casual restaurant famous for its unique, low-calorie menu, announces the appointment of Steven Gardner as Director of Franchise Sales and Development.
Gardner, who most recently served as an independent franchise consultant and business broker, will be responsible for planning and implementing franchise sales programs targeted toward existing and new growth markets.
"Steven Gardner is a proven leader in the franchising industry and we are thrilled that he has taken on this role to further grow the Energy Kitchen brand," said Anthony Leone, Founder and President of Energy Kitchen. "His experience makes him an ideal choice to develop and lead our strategic initiative to complement the brand's continued growth, and a major step towards solidifying our position as the leader in the healthy, fast-casual industry."
Gardner's franchise experience spans more than two decades in franchise sales and development. He has established himself as a leader in franchise sales, licensing, real estate development, business brokerage and marketing, having worked with such brands as Dunkin' Donuts, Burger King, Coldstone Creamery, The Original Soupman and Pudgies Famous Chicken, among others. Some of Gardner's more recognized accomplishments include the merger of Pudgies Famous Chicken into Arthur Treacher's Fish and Chips and creating The Original Soupman's co-branding opportunity with Coldstone Creamery.
"Energy Kitchen is the perfect opportunity to work with a proven franchisor and enhance a franchise network that is poised for aggressive growth," Gardner said. "With outstanding existing brand awareness, our goals include strengthening the company's presence in markets where we have locations and expanding into new markets."
Founded by Anthony Leone in 2004, Manhattan-based Energy Kitchen is a healthy, fast-casual restaurant that provides nutritious and convenient meal choices by offering low-calorie, low-fat, wraps, salads, burgers and smoothies. Everything on the menu is 500 calorie or less and is grilled, baked or steamed, never fried, and cooked to order. With 10 locations operating in the New York Tri-State area, company plans call for a total of 1,000 restaurants nationwide in the next 10 years.