Zoup! Stirs Up Ontario's Entrepreneurial Pot

Leading Fast-Casual Soup Chain Offers Guidance for Promising Franchise Opportunity; Spotlights FranNet's 'Meet the Franchisor' Workshop May 3rd

April 08, 2011 // Franchising.com // SOUTHFIELD, Mich. – Looking to feed Ontario's growing entrepreneurial spirit, Zoup! Fresh Soup Company, the leading soup restaurant concept in the fast-casual industry, will be educating entrepreneurs through the FranNet of South Ontario's "Meet the Franchisor" workshop on May 3, 2011.

Held at the Four Points by Sheraton in Mississauga, the workshop will be hosted by Gary Prenevost, FranNet's top franchisee in North America, with the goal of presenting entrepreneurs an opportunity to learn what has made Zoup! a leader in its industry for more than 12 years.

"I have received numerous requests from my clients to represent food concepts in the fast-casual category, and I'm thrilled to represent Zoup! and its unique franchise opportunity," said Prenevost. "Over the years, Zoup! has built an incredible infrastructure and offers the support to help guide the savvy entrepreneur looking to grow within a proven franchise system."

For the workshop, Zoup! will host a soup tasting at 2 p.m., offering samples of its award-winning Lobster Bisque, Chicken Pot Pie and vegetarian soups, followed by a presentation and Q&A with Eric Ersher, Zoup! founder and managing partner, and Richard Simtob, Zoup! partner. An additional workshop will be held later in the day, with a soup tasting a 6 p.m., followed by a presentation and Q&A at 7 p.m. The workshop is free, but registration is required.

Already the hottest soup spot in Detroit, Mich., and a regional favorite throughout the Midwest and Northeast United States with 31 restaurants in eight states, Zoup! is engaged in an aggressive growth plan to expand its unique concept and menu throughout the northern half of the United States and Canada. With its first Canadian franchise set to open in Waterloo, Ontario, company plans call for an additional 25 Ontario locations in the next five years.

"As we continue to build momentum and grow our concept in the United States and Canada, we've turned to Ontario to become the center for further Canadian growth," said Ersher. "We hope that those attending our workshops will see the strength of our business model and feel the unique culture we bring to the franchise community."

Zoup! features hundreds of award-winning soups with 12 rotating daily varieties, including low-fat, vegetarian, dairy-free, low-points and gluten-free options. According to Ersher, "We created Zoup! after discovering that really good soup is hard to find. Also, in talking to people, it became clear that there's something special about soup and the way it elicits thoughts of family, well-being and comfort for many people. We strive to offer authentic, hand-crafted soups that are as good – and as "feel-good" – as the homemade soups our mothers and grandmothers used to cook up."

Zoup!'s "Something for Everyone" nutritional offerings include low-fat soups such as Veggie Waves of Grain, Old Fashion Chicken Noodle and Frontier 7 Bean, dairy-free soups like the Mulligatawny and Sesame Noodle Bowl, vegetarian soups, including Tomato Bisque and Spicy Italian Vegetable, low-points options such as Spicy Black Bean Chili and Wild Mushroom Barley and gluten-free choices such like the Tomato Spinach and Brown Rice. Customer favorites also include Chicken Pot Pie, Lobster Bisque and Vegetarian Split Pea.

To help customers select from the soups offered each day, Zoup! encourages sampling. "It's one of the most important and most fun things we offer at Zoup!," says Ersher. "We want our customers to try our soups before ordering because we want to be sure that they always enjoy their meal." The menu also includes fresh, made-to-order GreenZ! Salads, grilled and rolled SandwicheZ! and an array of baked goods and beverages.

About Zoup!

Founded in 1998, Zoup! is the leading fast-casual soup concept restaurant that is defining the category with its premium and proprietary soups and other recipes. A dining experience that features 12 always-rotating soup varieties each day in an environment that focuses on comfort, satisfaction and convenience, Zoup! has grown its network of franchises to 31 restaurants throughout Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Illinois. For more information, visit www.zoup.com.



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