Burger 21 Opens for Business in Georgia and North Carolina - Award-Winning Fast Casual Chain Brings Its Beyond the Better Burger Concept to Atlanta and Charlotte -

TAMPA, Fla., July 29, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Burger 21®, a new better burger franchise founded by the owners of The Melting Pot® Restaurants, Inc., announced it has expanded the brand to Georgia and North Carolina with the opening of its first Metro Atlanta restaurant today followed by a new location in Charlotte, N.C., on Aug. 5. These openings mark the concept's eighth and ninth open restaurants in addition to its 16 franchised locations in development along the East Coast.

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"The expansion into two new states marks a major milestone for Burger 21 as we strive to introduce the Atlanta and Charlotte markets to our diverse menu of crafted burgers and hand-dipped shakes," said Mark Johnston, Burger 21 president and chief concept officer of Front Burner Brands, management company for Burger 21. "We see these cities as key markets for expansion over the next few years, aiming to develop 15-20 units in Atlanta and an additional 10 in Charlotte through franchise opportunities."

The new Metro Atlanta restaurant is located at 3385 Woodward Crossing Blvd., Suite 350, in Buford and is owned and operated by husband-and-wife team Corley and Meg Steward who plan to open a second location in the North Alpharetta area in 2014. The Charlotte location will open Aug. 5 in Ballantyne Village at 14825 Ballantyne Village Way. In addition to offering guests a variety of burgers like the Tex-Mex Haystack, Spicy Thai Shrimp, Black Bean and Chicken Marsala, both locations will have craft beer and wine by the glass.

Burger 21 recently was named one of Fast Casual's Top 100 "Movers and Shakers" of 2013. The concept ranked No. 22 based on its variety of innovative recipes and recent expansion. In addition, the franchise's latest gluten-free menu received the No. 1 ranking for the "Top 10 Menu Innovations," and Mark Johnston was recognized as one of the "Top 20 People" for his strategic leadership in the growth and development of the brand.

To further fuel Burger 21's expansion, the company is actively seeking qualified franchisees and will host a live webinar on Aug. 29 at 2 p.m. EDT. To register, or to learn more about franchising opportunities with Burger 21, please visit www.burger21franchise.com/events.aspx.

Since launching its aggressive growth plan in fall 2011, Burger 21 has signed franchise agreements with 11 different entities in eight states to develop a total of 21 franchised units in cities along the East Coast from New York to Florida. 

Burger 21 is seeking single- and multi-unit operators with restaurant experience to join its upscale fast casual dining concept. Franchisee candidates should have a minimum net worth of $500,000 and liquid assets of at least $200,000 per unit. Burger 21 will be developed through both single-unit agreements and Area Development Agreements. Depending on the real estate site selected, franchisees can expect the total investment for one restaurant to be approximately $414,495$831,995. The initial franchise fee is $40,000; however, reduced franchise fees apply for Area Development Agreements of four or more units. 

To learn more about ownership opportunities with Burger 21, contact Ashley Pollard, franchise development manager for Burger 21, at 813-425-6252 or apollard@burger21.com or visit www.burger21franchise.com.

About Burger 21
With eight locations open in Tampa Bay, Fla., Orlando, Fla., Voorhees, N.J., and Atlanta, Ga., and 16 in development in six states, Burger 21 is a "beyond the better burger" fast-casual franchise concept founded in 2010. Burger 21 is a chef-inspired brand with offerings including 21 unique burger and slider creations ranging from hand-crafted, freshly ground Certified Angus Beef® to chicken, turkey, vegetarian, shrimp and tuna burgers, made-to-order salads, all-beef hot dogs, hand-breaded chicken tenders and an extensive shake bar including hand-dipped shakes, floats and sundaes. Burger 21 is an affiliate of Front Burner Brands, a restaurant management company headquartered in Tampa, Fla. For more information, visit http://www.burger21.com.

About Front Burner Brands
Front Burner Brands (formerly known as TGS Restaurant Management) is a restaurant management company headquartered in Tampa, Fla. It is affiliated with the corporate owners of and its management services extended to The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc., founded in 1975 with more than 135 locations in North America and more than 25 locations currently in development, Burger 21 with eight locations open in Tampa Bay, Fla., Orlando, Fla., Voorhees, N.J., and Atlanta, Ga., and 16 in development in six states, GrillSmith with six locations in the Tampa Bay area and other new franchise concepts in development. For more information, visit http://www.frontburnerbrands.com.

CONTACT:  Ashley Rodriguez 
                   Fish Consulting
                   (571) 312-6174
                   arodriguez@fish-consulting.com

SOURCE Burger 21



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