ATLANTA, May 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Tropical Smoothie Café, the leading fast casual café concept known for its better-for-you food and smoothies with a tropical twist, announced today it has appointed Barry Schnur chief financial and administrative officer. In addition to his roles leading the company's fiscal functions and day-to-day operations, Schnur will play a significant role in developing and implementing technology initiatives for the franchise system.
"Barry's extensive technology background and experience leading software companies makes him a valuable addition to our executive team," said Mike Rotondo, CEO of Tropical Smoothie Café. "He has a passion for creating customer-focused technology that drives business growth, which is exactly the expertise we need right now, as we are growing aggressively and introducing several major technology initiatives, including our new mobile ordering and payment app, and Jolt, a new café management tool."
Schnur brings more than 20 years of experience developing and implementing enterprise information systems, including 10 years at software companies. Prior to joining Tropical Smoothie Café, Schnur was senior vice president of customer success at IgnitionOne, a provider of cloud-based, digital marketing and advertising technology solutions, where he led all customer-facing functions for Fortune 500 brands. He also has served on the executive team at Silverpop, an Atlanta-based, SaaS digital marketing provider, where he was senior vice president of operations.
Prior to Silverpop, Schnur led multiple professional services organizations, including at S1, where he was responsible for large-scale implementations of financial services systems. Before S1, Schnur served in various leadership roles at Accenture, Ernst & Young and EDS, where he implemented custom software and ERP systems.
Tropical Smoothie Café reported its strongest year of growth in 2015 with same-stores sales of 11.25 percent and signed franchise agreements to develop 199 new cafes across the U.S. This year, the food and smoothie franchise plans to exceed 550 restaurants nationwide. The brand currently has franchise opportunities across the U.S. in markets such as Miami, Philadelphia, Boston, Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth, Atlanta, and Columbus, among others. By 2018, Tropical Smoothie Café plans to have 800 cafés open across the U.S.
Tropical Smoothie Café is looking to add qualified franchisees to its growing brand. Candidates should have business experience; $125,000 in liquid assets and a minimum net worth of $350,000; and an initial investment of between $210,550 and $478,550. The healthier fast food franchise currently boasts an average unit volume (AUV) of more than $634,000 — the highest in the company's 19-year history — with the top 50 percent reporting an AUV of more than $806,000.
Tropical Smoothie Café's aggressive franchise growth is backed by the entrepreneurs at the BIP Franchise Accelerator, a division of venture capital firm BIP Capital, which invested in the brand in 2010. BIP Capital has invested more than $250 million in emerging, high-growth brands across the franchising, software, and technology and consumer products industries. BIP Capital created the BIP Franchise Accelerator to leverage its leadership team's deep franchise experience to help emerging brands accelerate their growth. In addition to Tropical Smoothie Café, the BIP Franchise Accelerator's portfolio includes Tin Drum Asian Kitchen, which has grown to 13 locations in Georgia and Florida.
About Tropical Smoothie Café
Founded in 1997, Tropical Smoothie Café is a fast-casual restaurant concept inspiring healthier lifestyles across the country, with over 480 locations nationwide. With snack and meal options for any time of day, Tropical Smoothie Café serves smoothies, salads, tacos, wraps, sandwiches, and flatbreads. The rapidly growing franchise has received numerous accolades including being ranked on Entrepreneur's 2016 Franchise 500, 2015 Fast Casual Top 100 Movers and Shakers, Franchise Times' Top 200+ and Nation's Restaurant News' 2015 Top 200. Tropical Smoothie Café is seeking qualified franchisees to expand throughout the United States in markets such as Miami, Philadelphia, Boston, Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth, Atlanta and Columbus, among others.
About the BIP Franchise Accelerator
The BIP Franchise Accelerator is a division of BIP Capital, an Atlanta-based venture capital firm with over $250 million invested in over 26 companies in emerging, high-growth brands across the franchising, software, technology and consumer products industries. BIP Capital created the BIP Franchise Accelerator to leverage its leadership team's deep franchise experience to help emerging brands accelerate their growth. The BIP Franchise Accelerator not only provides investment capital, but also uses proven strategies to help companies evolve into mature, thriving brands. From fast casual and QSR concepts to service brands and healthcare and education concepts, the BIP Franchise Accelerator has invested in emerging brands driven by people with an entrepreneurial spirit that have a great growth potential. Its current portfolio includes Tropical Smoothie Café, Tin Drum Asian Kitchen and BIP Franchise Finance. For more information on BIP Franchise Accelerator, visit www.bipfranchiseaccelerator.com.
SOURCE Tropical Smoothie Cafe