Bojangles’ Restaurants Inc. said Thursday that Randy Kibler plans to retire as president and chief executive as soon as a successor is named.
The Charlotte, N.C.-based Bojangles’ Famous Chicken ‘n Biscuits chain said Kibler, in the roles since 2007, would remain on the board and that no other executive changes are expected.
The board has hired an executive search firm to consider internal and external candidates, the company said.
Kibler, 59, said in a statement that “it is difficult to retire from an organization with so much momentum and blessed with such fine people.”
He continued, “But after more than 40 years in the restaurant business it's time to spend more time with our grandchildren while supporting our church and community alongside my lovely wife of 39 years, Nancy.”
Andrew Crawford, a principal at Advent International, the private-equity firm that bought a controlling interest in Bojangles’ in 2011 , said that under Kibler’s leadership, “Bojangles’ increased its number of restaurants by nearly 50 percent and produced steady revenue gains, even during the recent recession.”
In the recent Nation’s Restaurant News Top 100 census, Bojangles’ ranked No. 19 in U.S systemwide sales growth, rising from No. 29 in the prior year. Sales grew to $864.5 million for the year ended December 2012, an increase of 12.65 percent from the prior-year figure of $767.4 million
“We are grateful that, by agreeing to serve on the board of directors, Randy will continue to offer Bojangles’ his deep knowledge of the quick-service category and his insight into the importance of aligning the brand with its franchisee system,” Crawford added.
Kibler joined Bojangles’ in 2007 when the company was acquired by an investment group led by Falfurrias Capital Partners. Falfurrias is a Charlotte-based private equity firm co-founded by former Bank of America executives Hugh L. McColl Jr. and Marc Oken.
Kibler began his career in 1970 as an hourly employee at a Hardee's in Columbia, S.C., and spent 26 years working at franchise owner Spartan Foods and later Flagstar Cos. Inc., where his roles included president and chief operating officer of the company's 600-restaurant Hardee's division, overseeing Quincy's Family Steakhouse and serving as vice president of the western division of Denny's.
Bojangles’ has about 550 franchised and company-owned chicken and biscuit restaurants in 10 Southeastern states and the District of Columbia.
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