Johnny Rockets Co-Founder Steps Up Plans to Expand Iconic Brand in Supermarkets, Restaurants
New York – Soupman, Inc. (Public trading symbol: SOUP), the parent company of the best-tasting soup brand in the world, Original SoupMan®, announced the appointment of Lloyd Sugarman to the position of Chief Executive Officer. Sugarman, who brings a wealth of retail merchandising, restaurant operations and franchising experience, will focus on the expansion of the Company’s award-winning soups into the $6 billion annual retail soup category following the recent launch of The Original SoupMan’s Tetra Pak cartons in grocers’ soup aisles.
SoupMan’s new shelf-stable carton soups are now being sold in the main soup aisle of supermarkets across the country alongside famous age-old soup brands, Campbell’s® and Progresso®.
In addition to the grocery store retail line, Sugarman intends to also leverage his 20 years of restaurant industry experience to expand the Company’s franchise model, Al’s Famous New York Delicatessen & Restaurant, which features the world renowned Original SoupMan® soups, along with a full authentic NY delicatessen breakfast and lunch menu. The Company recently announced multi-unit franchise deals to open Al’s Famous New York Delicatessen & Restaurant model in Casinos throughout the United States and Canada. The next two locations are slated to open in the Mohegan Resorts Casino in Atlantic City and the Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in P.A.
“We believe that Lloyd’s unique combination of business acumen, creative thinking and incredible passion and energy make him an ideal fit to lead our management team at Soupman,” said Robert Bertrand, President of Soupman. “He thinks big and has shown that he knows how to execute. Soupman is at a pivotal point in our growth with product presence in grocery stores and growing our deli franchise. We believe Lloyd is the leader to get us where we want to be on both fronts.”
Sugarman was one of the first to sign on when the 25-year-old Johnny Rockets brand started franchising in 1986. Today, he operates 17 Johnny Rockets locations throughout seven states, with annual sales exceeding $24 million – some of the most highest-grossing locations in the 300-unit chain. He is credited for introducing entertainment elements, adding vegetarian menu items and introducing a new prototype that catapulted the hamburger chain’s success. In 2010, seeing tremendous potential, Sugarman became an Area Developer for the Original Soupman and currently owns three Original Soupman franchises across seven states.
“We are taking what has historically been a dormant category and making it incredibly exciting by doing something we believe is different and better than anyone out there,” Sugarman said. “We’ve got powerful brand recognition. We’ve got celebrities and athletes and famous chefs backing us. We’ve got Tetra-Pak packaging to preserve taste and quality of Al’s famous soups and artistic design that appeals to the eye, and we’ve got a franchise restaurant model to supplement grocery store distribution. But at the core of it all is a superior product. That’s what we expect will catapult our growth and carry us for years to come.”
About Soupman, Inc.
In 1984, The Original Soupman opened its doors at 55th Street & 8th Avenue in Manhattan. The tiny storefront quickly became a worldwide destination. Rated #1 by Zagat and praised by the New York Times as “Art, not Soup”, it set the standard for innovation and excellence long before the famous Seinfeld episode made it a cultural icon. The Company sells soup to grocery stores across America, has franchised restaurants and sell soups to foodservices. Shaquille O’Neal serves as an advisor to, and equity partner in the Company, as does Mr. October, Reggie Jackson and Emmy® and Golden Globe® nominated and Tony Award® winning actor Jason Alexander. Soupman, Inc., Tim Gannon, the co-founder of Outback Steakhouse, is the SoupMan Culinary and Business Director and Board Member.www.soupmaninc.com, parent company of The Original Soupman, Inc. is a fully reporting public company trading under the symbol SOUP. For additional information on our company please visit: www.originalsoupman.com. Follow us on Twitter @ OriginalSoupman and “Like” us on Facebook.
Safe Harbor Statement:
This press release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. The forward-looking statements are based on current expectations, estimates and projections made by management. The Company intends for the forward-looking statements to be covered by the safe harbor provisions for forward-looking statements. Words such as “anticipates,” “expects,” “intends,” “plans,” “believes,” “seeks,” “estimates,” or variations of such words are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release include, statements regarding the expected contribution of Mr. Sugarman, the expansion of marketing plans for i Al’s Famous New York Delicatessen &Restaurant, the anticipated opening of restaurant at the Mohegan Resorts Casino in Atlantic City and the Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in PA in 2013, the Company’s new shelf-stable product for grocery retail sale and its expected availability and statements regarding the quality of the Company’s product driving future growth. All forward-looking statements in this press release are made as of the date of this press release, and the Company assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements other than as required by law. The forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth or implied by any forward-looking statements such as our ability to secure additional casino locations for Al’s Famous New York Delicatessen &Restaurant and attract other seasoned restaurant operators or otherwise to implement our marketing plan, including raise necessary capital, and the risk factors discussed in the Business and Management’s Discussion and Analysis sections in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Annual Reports on Form 10-K and Current Reports on Form 8-K. Copies of these filings are available at www.sec.gov
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