Global Executive Search and Global Expansion: TGI Fridays CEO to Step Down as Company Grows the Brand in New Territories

"We're turning our focus towards growth and creating relevance with today's consumers because we believe there is significant upside potential," said Rohit Manocha, co-founder of TriArtisan Capital Advisors, who will assume Blanchette's responsibilities on an interim basis.

Ray Blanchette has stepped down as Chief Executive Officer of Dallas-based restaurant chain TGI Fridays and board chair Rohit Manocha, co-founder of TriArtisan Capital Advisors, will assume Blanchette’s responsibilities on an interim basis.

The TGI Fridays executive team will report directly to Manocha.

“TGI Fridays is beginning a new phase of revitalization, innovation, and value creation. We’re turning our focus towards growth and creating relevance with today’s consumers because we believe there is significant upside potential,” Manocha said in a statement. “Under Ray’s leadership, the brand’s performance has improved, and he built a strong operating culture that will carry us forward as we pursue new territories. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of all of our team members, Fridays is well positioned for success as we look toward the future.”

Blanchette led TGI Fridays for the past five years, managing the company through a successful turnaround that included both national and global growth as well as through the turbulence created by the COVID-19 pandemic, the company said.

Global executive search and global expansion

TriArtisan is the lead investor in TGI Fridays with extensive holdings in the restaurant and hospitality industry, including P.F. Chang’s, Hooters, and Creating Culinary Communities (C3), the company said.

TGI Fridays said that a global executive search firm has been retained to search for a new CEO, with both internal and external candidates under consideration.

TGI Fridays operates 700 restaurants in 52 countries, and it saw total sales projected at $1.6 billion in 2022 with same U.S. sales growing at 8% compared to 2019 (pre-pandemic).

Last year, the company announced in September its most significant deal in its history including 75 new restaurants throughout South and Southeast Asia over the next 10 years representing over $500 million in revenue.

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