Bristol-based café/bar group Loungers has hired Justin Carter, currently operations director at pub company Fuller's, to take on the post of chief operations officer.
Carter, who previously founded the Elbow Room chain which he ran for 13 years before selling it in 2008, will leave his role at Fuller's in December to join Loungers at the beginning of 2015.
Loungers' current COO Nick Collins will step up to work more closely with Loungers MD Alex Reilley.
Reilley, said: "We're seriously delighted that Justin has agreed to join us. First and foremost we consider him to be the perfect cultural fit for the business and he is clearly an extremely experienced and well-respected operator. He also knows what it's like to have your own business and in addition to a wealth of operational expertise we also see him bringing some major entrepreneurial thinking to the table."
"In our view Justin's appointment is a clear statement of intent and we feel that with Justin on board coupled with Nick's continued progression we are extremely well set to see the business grow to hundreds of sites."
Loungers opened its 51st site, Kino Lounge, in Kettering at the end of August and will reach 56 sites by the end of the year. A further 20 openings are planned for 2015.