LAKE FOREST, CA - (Marketwired - Sep 9, 2013) - Del Taco has announced several promotions and new appointments to its leadership team as the company continues its plans for aggressive growth beyond its Southern California roots.
Mike Lucero has been promoted to the role of Vice President of Franchise Development and Real Estate. John Druse has been promoted to Vice President of Design and Construction. Eric Grundmeier has been named Vice President of Supply Chain and Quality Assurance. David Wetzel has been named Vice President of Franchise Operations.
"Del Taco is entering new markets at an unprecedented pace and these additions to our leadership team will ensure our strategies are well-executed across the board," said Paul Murphy, Del Taco CEO.
Lucero is a thirteen-year company veteran focusing on the real estate needs of the company and franchisees. "Mike Lucero's deep knowledge of our company combined with his franchise expertise makes him the perfect individual to lead our franchise development team," said Paul Murphy, Del Taco CEO.
Druse has been with the company since 2007 and successfully managed more than 43 Del Taco company unit openings including Dallas and Austin, Texas; Atlanta, Georgia; and the pending entry into Oklahoma. "John's promotion reflects these achievements and many others and elevates his role to become focused on driving cost efficiencies into our current prototype and furthering productive franchise relationships, each which will further system growth," Murphy said.
With extensive food service experience, Grundmeier was most recently Vice President of Supply Chain and QA for Qdoba Restaurant Corporation, which operates Qdoba Mexican Grill, a 600-unit chain of fast casual Fresh Mex restaurants. His experience in optimizing the supply chain has helped to facilitate new store growth, and he was integral in supporting Qdoba's growth from 23 units to more than 600 in over 14 years. "Eric is currently implementing changes within the Supply Chain department to more efficiently support current restaurants and new restaurant development," Murphy said.
Wetzel will head the company's aggressive efforts to build its franchise business nationwide. His broad restaurant experience includes operation stints at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, El Pollo Loco, It's A Grind Coffee House, Koo Koo Roo restaurants, and Taco Bell. "David's breadth of operations experience with so many brands will be critical to the success of our franchise growth," Murphy said.
At Del Taco, all menu items taste better because they are made to order with fresh ingredients including cheddar cheese grated from 40-pound blocks, handmade pico de gallo salsa, lard-free beans slow-cooked from scratch, and marinated chicken grilled in the restaurant. The menu includes classic Mexican dishes such as tacos, burritos, quesadillas and nachos as well as American favorites including hamburgers, crinkle-cut fries and shakes. Earlier this year, Del Taco announced a rebranding effort and the "UnFreshing Believable" advertising campaign to communicate the lengths the company goes to in order to deliver quality, made-to-order menu items created with freshly-prepared ingredients. Del Taco also serves breakfast featuring a full line of breakfast burritos. Del Taco has more than 550 restaurants in 18 states serving more than three million guests each week. Visit www.deltaco.com for more information or www.deltacofranchise.com for franchise information.