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Bob Evans shuffles management at chains

COLUMBUS Ohio Bob Evans Farms Inc. is restructuring management teams at both its Bob Evans and Mimi’s Cafe chains to improve synergies between the brands and to focus on restaurant growth, the company said Wednesday.


The moves were sparked by the retirement of the president of Bob Evans Restaurants, Roger Williams, who will leave the company in February after nearly 42 years.




Bob Evans' restaurants include the 570-unit Bob Evans and 139-unit Mimi’s Cafe chains. The company also is a producer and distributor of pork sausage and home-style convenience food items.




To fill Williams’ role, two new positions — president and chief restaurant operations officer, as well as president and chief concept officer — were created at Bob Evans Restaurants and filled respectively by Harvey Brownlee, a Yum! Brands veteran, and Randy Hicks, who was promoted from vice president of restaurant operations.




Brownlee will concentrate on standardizing processes throughout the system and on finding purchasing synergies for both Bob Evans and Mimi’s Cafe, the company said. Prior to this role, he was KFC’s chief operating officer. He will report to Bob Evans Farms chairman and chief executive Steve Davis.




The concept officer, Hicks, will Òact as the strategic change leaderÓ and focus on overall growth as Bob Evans attempts to become a national chain. In addition, Hicks will focus on driving sales, concept evolution, growth strategy, new product innovation, succession planning and supply chain integration. Hicks also will report to Davis.




At Mimi’s Cafe, Tim Pulido will take the new title of president and chief concept officer. He was formerly president of the chain and will continue to report to Davis.




In addition, Kathy North, Bob Evans’ vice president and regional director, has been promoted to senior vice president for restaurant operations, with responsibility for oversight of the chain’s regional directors. She will report to Brownlee.



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