The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc. Signs 12-Unit Franchise Deal for the Middle East

Largest Multi-Unit Agreement in the Fondue Franchise’s History will Bring 12 Units to Eight Countries

TAMPA, Fla. - October 16, 2012 - (BUSINESS WIRE) - The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc., the world’s premier fondue restaurant franchise, announces plans to bring its unique fondue dining experience to eight countries in the Middle East through a 12-unit franchise development agreement with Hospitality Concepts and Solutions (HCS).

Through the largest franchise deal in The Melting Pot’s history, HCS will open 12 Melting Pot locations over eight years in the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Jordan, Lebanon and Egypt.

“There is nothing like The Melting Pot in the Middle East and my team and I are excited to bring this unique fondue dining experience to the region,” said HCS Co-Managing Partner Ziad Kaddoura. “With the backing of The Melting Pot’s strong franchise support team in Tampa, Fla., we look forward to great success with the concept in the Middle East.”

“With the ever-growing international clientele in this region, we are confident that The Melting Pot will carve its own niche in this competitive market,” said HCS Co-Managing Partner Mohamed Kamal Charafeddine. “The welcoming atmosphere and interactive dining experience combined with an extensive menu of fondue choices including cheese, entrée and chocolate fondues will surely attract local families, expatriates and those looking for a fresh, new dining experience.”

HCS is actively pursuing sites for its first Melting Pot location to open in 2013 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates or Beirut, Lebanon.

The first Melting Pot location in the Middle East is slated to open in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Thalia Street in early 2013 through a five-unit franchise deal for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia signed in late 2011 with Dr. Mazen Almugbel of Albabteen United Foods Company, LLC and Mira Foods.

“We’ve received tremendous interest in our brand worldwide because it’s a unique and interactive concept,” said Dan Stone, vice president of franchise development for Front Burner Brands, restaurant management company for The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc. “The Melting Pot experience transcends cultural differences and is especially attractive to cultures that place great value on spending time with family and friends around a table of food.”

In addition to franchise development in the Middle East, The Melting Pot is continuing international expansion in Canada and Mexico having opened its second location in Canada in Richmond Hill, Ontario and its third location in Mexico City this year.

With 33 international locations open, signed or committed for development in Canada, Mexico, the Middle East and Asia, the company is also looking to Australia, China, India, Brazil and other provinces in Canada for further expansion opportunities.

For more information about franchising opportunities, please visit http://www.meltingpot.com.

About The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc.

With more than 140 restaurants in North America, existing locations in 36 states, Canada and Mexico and more than 20 locations currently in development, The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc. is the premier fondue restaurant franchise. Founded in 1975, The Melting Pot continues to be a memorable dining experience. Guests enjoy a choice of fondue cooking styles and a variety of unique entrées combined with dipping sauces. The menu also includes cheese fondues, salads, fine wines and chocolate fondue desserts. The Melting Pot is an affiliate of Front Burner Brands, a restaurant management company headquartered in Tampa, Fla. For more information, visit http://www.meltingpot.com.

About Hospitality Concepts and Solutions

Established in 2004, Hospitality Concepts and Solutions (HCS) is a leading multi-faceted global franchise service provider in the Middle East providing hospitality consulting and management services. HCS operates the largest Outback Steakhouse in the world in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and is affiliated with additional franchise concepts including Entrecote Café de Paris, MBCo, Café Céramique and other brands.

Contact:

The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc.
Sandy D’Elosua
813-849-2117
National Director of Marketing and Communications
sdelosua@meltingpot.com

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