Johannesburg, 3 February 2014 — Taste Holdings has acquired a fifth food brand, Zebro’s Chicken, targeted at the same market as its other highly successful franchise, The Fish & Chip Co.

Marcel Strauss, current Managing Executive of The Fish & Chip Co. who was instrumental in growing the brand into the number one fish Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) chain in South Africa, will head the new acquisition with effect from 1 March.  John Hickman, one of Zebro’s founders, will work with Strauss for the year to ensure a successful transition.

Strauss joined The Fish & Chip Co. in May 2012 as Managing Executive after successfully assisting Spar in growing its market share, increasing sales, reducing expenses and optimising processes. Since 2012, The Fish & Chip Co. opened an additional 170 new outlets increasing its national footprint to 334 stores, while creating over 3,300 job opportunities during this 20-month period. The company also boasts unparalleled black economic empowerment successes with 76,57% of its franchises being black-owned.

These achievements were managed by Strauss who ensured growth and shareholder value by consistent high-level attention to costing structures, sales, and budgets to ensure effective controls and guard net profit. He was also responsible for strategic planning and implementation to drive sales and strengthen its brand position among the LSM 3 – 7 markets.

Strauss, who obtained an MBA from the Regent Business School in 2006 and has a long and successful history in retail franchising, is just the man for the job to position Zebro’s Chicken among its LSM 4 – 6 target market.

“We have been searching for a powerful chicken brand for some years now. Zebro’s does not compete with main market players as it offers a unique preparation method and product, which is served in generous portions and at affordable prices. This will enable us to keep the entry cost for franchise owners as low as R750 000, which is the lowest entry cost for a chicken franchise in the country. It will also allow multiple store ownership, which is another concept that we want to grow under Marcel’s capable leadership,” says Carlo Gonzaga, CEO of the Taste Holdings group.

Zebro’s Chicken was started 15 years ago and currently has 40 outlets mainly in the Western and Eastern Cape where chicken is uniquely prepared on an open braai fire. With low prices and large portions it has a core menu of chicken on the bone, chicken burgers, Russian-style sausages, fresh-cut chips and salads.

Announcement by PR Worx


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