Margaritas Mexican Restaurant Inks Franchise Deal for Greater Philly Area

Experienced Franchise Owner to Open Five Locations of Popular Mexican Spot

December 06, 2011 // Franchising.com // Portsmouth, NH – A seasoned franchisee with more than 20 years in the restaurant industry has signed on to bring Margaritas Mexican Restaurant, a popular restaurant and lounge that’s developed a cult-following throughout New England, to the Philadelphia area.

After successfully expanding the brand in New England through corporate stores since 1985, Margaritas Mexican Restaurant has grown to 23 locations. Of those, 22 are in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and Connecticut, while the chain’s first franchised location opened in New Jersey earlier this year.

Craig Colby, who at one time ran 15 Burger King restaurants with his twin brother, will bring the south-of-the-border cuisine, energetic bar scene and galleries of hand-crafted Mexican artwork to Delaware, Southern New Jersey and Philadelphia. The first location is planned for the Riverfront Wilmington complex, at 640 Justison Street in Wilmington, Delaware. The agreement calls for four additional restaurants in the next five years.

“We are thrilled to have Margaritas join our city,” said Rob Stenta, Director of Commercial Leasing for Pettinaro, the landlord of the Riverfront Wilmington complex. “With the combination of Margaritas unique concept and Craig Colby’s history as a proven operator, we are confident this will be a success.”

Colby, who currently owns four Red Robin® Gourmet Burgers and four Cosi® restaurants in Southern New Jersey and Delaware, says he’s looking forward to expanding his restaurant portfolio and introducing a new type of Mexican dining to the area.

“On my first visit to Margaritas, I was immediately hooked by the energy, food and interior décor. I know that the people in this area are going to feel that excitement too,” said Colby. “The authenticity of the ingredients and artifacts really makes this concept stand out.”

The new franchises will be opened through Mid-Atlantic Restaurant Concepts, LLC.

“The vast restaurant experience Craig and his team bring to Margaritas is exciting. We have no doubt the concept will thrive in the Philadelphia market, and we’re thrilled to continue our expansion throughout the Atlantic Seaboard,” said John Pelletier, founder of Margaritas.

Margaritas has outpaced competitors in the casual dining segment, demonstrating solid unit-level economics fueled by a beverage-to-food sales ratio of 45.5 percent and a 23.5 percent EBITDAR, which falls into the top tier of its peers. A strategic site-location process that targets restaurants that can be retrofitted for Margaritas’ needs also contributes to their success.

About Margaritas Mexican Restaurants

Founded in 1986 by John Pelletier, Margaritas Mexican Restaurants has 23 locations throughout Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey and Connecticut. From colorful authentic décor to a commitment to community relations through field trips and visiting artist demonstrations, Margaritas provides an atmosphere rich with the culture and flavors of Mexico, offering guests a fun dining adventure in a festive gallery of Mexican art. Margaritas Mexican Restaurants have earned numerous awards and honors, including being named the best Mexican restaurant in both New Hampshire and Connecticut. For more information on Margaritas, visit www.margs.com.

Media Contact:

Sara Faiwell, Fishman Public Relations, (847) 945-1300 or sfaiwell@fishmanpr.com

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