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Arby's appoints chief innovation officer

Arby’s has tapped Warren Chang to serve in the new position of chief innovation officer for taste, quality and customer experience, parent company Wendy's/Arby's Group said Monday.

Chang, 54, will be responsible for leading innovation and change initiatives in the areas of product development, quality improvement and customer experience for the 3,700-unit chain. He will report to Arby's new president, Hala Moddelmog

Chang is no stranger to the Arby’s brand. He was in charge of its marketing and menu and product development initiatives from 1994 to 1998.

Before joining Arby’s, Chang, a 30-year foodservice veteran, served as president of Carino’s Italian, a 140-unit casual dining chain based in Austin, Texas. He also has worked for the McDonald’s, Yum! Brands and Applebee’s restaurant companies.

“Warren brings a wealth of restaurant experience to the Arby’s leadership team,” Moddelmog said in a statement. “His appointment is another example of the decisive steps were taking to reinvigorate the Arby’s brand, improve same-store sales and grow profits. Our goal is to add new energy and focus to Arby’s ability to connect to customers’ needs, and accelerate our speed to market with innovative, high-quality products.”

Arby’s has been working to reverse negative sales trends and hired Moddelmog last month to spearhead the turnaround process. Additionally, Wendy’s/Arby’s Group has been the subject of acquisition talk after chairman Nelson Peltz disclosed earlier this month that he was entertaining a potential buyout offer from an unnamed third party.

Contact Elissa Elan at [email protected].

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