US fried chicken chain Popeyes has announced the senior team that will spearhead its goal of opening 350 UK restaurants within the next 10 years.
The group, which has more than 3,400 sites worldwide, is set make its UK debut this autumn and is eyeing further expansion in a mix of city centre and suburban locations.
Tom Byng, no relation to the Byron founder of the same name, joins as chief development officer from Franco Manca and Real Greek owner Fulham Shore, where he helped grow the business to more than 70 sites within five years.
At Popeyes Byng will lead the sourcing of its first restaurant in London and its ongoing site acquisition programme.
David Carey, former digital director at the Restaurant Group, has been named chief technology officer. He will oversee the creation and rollout of Popeyes' dedicated UK app, which will have its own delivery service from which guests can order directly.
Neil Williamson has joined has UK chief operation officer from Farmstand and has also held senior roles at Krispy Kreme UK and McDonald's Restaurants. He will have overall responsibility for Popeyes' operations and people team.
Tom Crowley, former chief executive of Boparan Restaurant Group, was named UK chief executive of Popeyes in April.
Crowley said Popeyes wants to leave a "lasting legacy" in the UK, adding: "I'm incredibly proud to reveal this team of talented people who will lead Popeyes UK as we land with a bang in the UK market.
"The buzz around our arrival is the envy of every restaurant business, and our proposition is unlike anything else on offer here currently. We've assembled exactly the right blend of progressive, forward-thinking minds to bring it to life in a way which will be completely unique for UK guests."
Popeyes was founded in New Orleans in Louisiana in 1972 and now trades in 25 countries.
Image: Ken Wolter/Shutterstock.com