Former Applebee’s executive Dave Goebel has been named president and chief executive of the 99-unit Mr. Goodcents Subs and Pastas, which he plans to update and expand.
Goebel, who also is a Mr. Goodcents franchisee, said he intends to move the Kansas City, Mo.-based chain forward with a two-pronged line of attack. First, he said, the chain will be refreshed and reinvigorated with new menu items, an updated restaurant design, improved customer service and innovative technology.
However, Goebel said, he “won’t fix what’s not broken, and that’s the core of the brand — fresh deli-sliced meat and bread baked fresh on-site twice a day.
“While many segments of the restaurant industry are getting clobbered, our consumer research shows Mr. Goodcents continues to score high marks for quality, freshness and value,” he continued. “In this economy, it doesn’t get any better than that.”
Goebel’s plans also call for stepping up unit growth by repositioning the chain to be more attractive to multiunit franchise operators. Currently, the majority of Mr. Goodcents’ franchisees operate only one or two units, the company said.
“Mr. Goodcents Subs and Pastas is a great brand with lots of blue sky ahead,” he said.
Goebel, who has more than 30 years of experience in the restaurant industry, spent seven years with Applebee’s International Inc., during which time the casual-dining chain expanded to more than 2,000 locations and generated revenues of more than $4 billion.
Goebel, who served as Applebee's president and CEO, and several other executives left the chain in 2007 after its acquisition by IHOP Corp.
Before joining Applebee’s, he was president of Summit Management, Inc., a start-up company that specialized in strategic planning and executive development to growth organizations. Before that, he ran Finest Foodservice LLC, an area developer and franchisee of Boston Market.
“I’ve worn both hats — franchisee and franchisor,” Goebel said. “But this — being both at the same time — is unique and ideal. I understand that the relationship between franchisee and franchisor is truly symbolic — for one to grow and flourish, the other must grow and flourish.”
Joe Bisogno, who founded Mr. Goodcents in 1989, will remain in the post of chairman, where he will focus on implementing a new technology platform for the chain.
Contact Paul Frumkin at [email protected].