LAKEWOOD, Colo., Mar 25, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Einstein Noah Restaurant Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: BAGL), a leader in the quick-casual segment of the restaurant industry operating primarily under the Einstein Bros.(R) Bagels, Noah's New York Bagels(R), and Manhattan Bagel(R) brands, announced today the appointment of Brian Unger as Executive Vice President of Operations and Mike Ellis as Executive Vice President of Franchise and Restaurant Development, effective immediately. As previously announced Dan Dominguez, Chief Operating Officer, will retire from the company at the end of June 2011 and will transition his responsibilities to Mr. Unger. As part of his retirement Mr. Dominguez has agreed to continue to provide services to the Company on a consulting basis for a two-year period.
Mr. Unger has a wealth of experience within the restaurant industry, including 25 years at McDonald's Corporation. He began his career with McDonald's in Downers Grove, Illinois in 1985, and joined McDonald's International group in 1991, working in Latin America as a Senior Business Consultant and moved to Puerto Rico in 1992, where he was named Director of Operations for Central America and the Caribbean. In 1997, Mr. Unger was appointed Director of Operations for Latin America, and in 2003, was named President of the Caribbean Region, where he led in the rapid expansion of McDonald's throughout the Region. He returned to the U.S. business in 2005, as Senior Vice President/General Manager McOpCo West Division in McDonald's USA. In 2009, Mr. Unger moved to Toronto, Canada to lead Canadian corporate operations as Vice President, McDonald's Canada.
Mr. Ellis has a deep background in franchising, real estate development, construction and design, and has held leadership roles at a number of world class restaurant operators. He most recently served as served as Chief Development Officer at O'Charley's, Inc. Previously, Mr. Ellis served as the Senior Vice President of Development at Carlson Restaurants Worldwide, and before that, as Chief Development Officer at Burger King Corporation. Mr. Ellis also held various positions of increasing responsibility at Darden Restaurants Inc.
Jeff O'Neill, Chief Executive Officer and President of Einstein Noah, stated, "We congratulate and welcome new team members Brian Unger and Mike Ellis to the Einstein Noah team. We look forward to benefitting from their experiences and insights as we solidify our Company base and seek to accelerate our franchise organization. We also salute Dan Dominguez's dedicated leadership, and the critical role he has played at Einstein Noah for the past 15 years. We are pleased that he will be taking some much deserved time off to spend with his wife and family, but will be eager to welcome him back to the Company early next year on a consulting basis."
Einstein Noah Restaurant Group, Inc. is a leading company in the quick casual restaurant industry that operates and licenses locations primarily under the Einstein Bros.(R) and Noah's New York Bagels(R) brands and primarily franchises locations under the Manhattan Bagel(R) brand. The company's retail system consists of over 730 restaurants in 39 states and the District of Columbia. It also operates a dough production facility. The company's stock is traded on the NASDAQ under the symbol BAGL. Visit www.einsteinnoah.com for additional information.
SOURCE: Einstein Noah Restaurant Group, Inc.