Centre Lane Partners – parent company of Conshohocken, Penn.-based salad chain Saladworks — has acquired fast-casual Mediterranean brand Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh and fast-casual smoothie/bowl concept Frutta Bowls, to form new holding company, Woworks, the company announced Tuesday.
The Saladworks team will be taking over both brands’ infrastructure and operations to drive growth. Garbanzo CEO James Park will stay on after the acquisition as special advisor to the CEO.
"Today, we welcome both Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh and Frutta Bowls to the Woworks family," Kelly Roddy, CEO of Saladworks and the new portfolio of brands within Woworks said in a statement. "Like Saladworks, we believe Garbanzo and Frutta Bowls are complementary brands -- all sharing a core DNA based upon fresh, flavorful and healthy food along with a heart for hospitality served through convenient business channels, which appeals to our Millennial family and Gen Z guests. We are excited to leverage the appeal of these unique and differentiated brands – along with the added size, scale and shared resources – to benefit all stakeholders including our team members, guests, business partners and communities.”
Frutta Bowls is a 37-unit, Freehold, N.J.-based fast-casual concept known for its smoothies, bowls, and coffee. Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh is a 25-location, Centennial, Colo.-based fast-casual brand known for its build-your-own pitas, bowls, salads, gyros and laffas (wraps).
"Garbanzo has a favorable path for growth post-pandemic and I'm looking forward to working alongside the new holding company Woworks to ensure a smooth transition," Garbanzo CEO James Park said in a statement. "Our brand and franchisees will benefit from the tremendous new resources this team can bring to continue the growth and prosperity of Garbanzo."
Saladworks currently has 100 locations in 18 states across the U.S. and in Canada. This year, Saladworks expanded by 40 locations to new markets in Canada, California, Tennessee, Rhode Island, Ohio, Florida and Indiana. Many of these new locations have been in what Saladworks calls “non-traditional presences,” from ghost kitchens and food trucks to grocery and retail.
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