Scottsdale-based Pita Jungle – with 17 locations in Arizona and two in California – has announced the appointment of Mike Stevens as its new president and COO for Pita Jungle Franchising Corporation. Stevens brings 30 years of experience in sales building, line item control, recruiting, personnel management, site selection, purchasing and budgeting to his new position.
In his role, Stevens is responsible for the day-to-day management of the Training, Purchasing, Information Services, Operations, and Construction departments, as well as Franchise Relations and Development. With a proven track record for perfecting systems and developing personnel programs, he will work to enhance Pita Jungle’s bench strength and management skills companywide.
“Pita Jungle is a well established brand with a strong reputation in the Arizona restaurant industry,” said Stevens. “I look forward to contributing to the brand’s positive growth and expansion in Arizona and other U.S. markets.”
Previously, Stevens served as senior vice president of Operations for a nationwide pub/full service eatery that, notably, opened 110 locations between 2008 and 2014 under his leadership. His background also includes serving as the franchise area director for an international quick service restaurant’s largest demographic area in the U.S. – Southern California – and training director for more than 225 units.
Pita Jungle was founded in 1994 by three college friends, and stands today as a $42-million restaurant concept with 17 locations throughout Arizona and two locations in California. With the mission of helping guests sustain a healthy and balanced lifestyle, the restaurants serve up a diverse menu of tasty, fresh, wholesome food, including a variety of vegetarian and vegan options. Pita Jungle’s menu is influenced by tastes from around the globe to offer something for every palette, including dishes inspired by Mediterranean, Latin, Asian and American cuisines.
As an industry pioneer in self-expression and appreciation for the community, each restaurant is developed to have a personality that is reflective of the local neighborhood. From the unique décor and monthly rotation of original artwork by local artists, to the custom, handpicked music playlist and creative, uniform-free staff, there are no cookie-cutter locations in the Pita Jungle system. The brand was named to “The Future 50: Fastest Growing Small Chains in America” by Restaurant Business in 2013 and 2014.
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