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P.F. Chang’s CEO moving to Portillo’s

P.F. Chang’s CEO moving to Portillo’s

Michael Osanloo will take over the Chicago-based brand Oct. 1

Portillo’s Hot Dogs LLC has named the CEO of P.F. Chang’s China Bistro as its next chief executive, the company said Monday.

Michael Osanloo, who grew up in Chicago, will take over as CEO effective Oct. 1. He succeeds Keith Kinsey, who is retiring. Kinsey has served as CEO of the Chicago-based hot dog chain since 2015. 

Osanloo’s appointment marks his return to the Windy City, where he grew up in the Chicago suburbs and recalled dining at Portillo’s in his childhood.

“Portillo's was the first restaurant that I drove to when I got my driver's license, and I'm thrilled to be returning to Illinois to join one of the country’s most beloved restaurant brands,” Osanloo said in a statement. “I look forward to building on the company’s success.”

It is unclear who will replace Osanloo at P.F. Chang’s, where he has been president and CEO since 2015.  P.F. Chang’s had not returned a request for comment by press time.

In early July, private-equity firm Centerbridge Partners L.P. said it was exploring a sale of the P.F. Chang’s after owning it for six years. Centerbridge and the board of Scottsdale, Ariz.-based Wok Parent LLC retained Bank of America’s Merrill Lynch and Barclays to oversee strategic options. Centerbridge took P.F. Chang's private in a $1 billion deal in July 2012.   

Prior P.F. Chang’s, Osanloo held leadership roles at Kraft Foods Group, Caesars Entertainment Corp. and Bain & Co.

At Kraft, he led the company’s grocery business unit in North America. Before that, he led Kraft’s global strategy and mergers-and-acquisitions division.

Dick Portillo opened the first Portillo’s in 1963. Over the years, the brand has earned a cult-like following in the Midwest for its Chicago-style hot dogs and Italian beef sandwiches.

In 2014, Boston-based Berkshire Partners bought a significant stake in the 38-unit company, which has since grown to more than 50 units.

Under Kinsey, it opened its first restaurants in Florida, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Dick Portillo does not have a stake in the company, but he serves as a consultant for the brand. Berkshire is the sole owner. 

Contact Nancy Luna at [email protected]

Follow her on Twitter: @FastFoodMaven

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