Simon Cope has been appointed as managing director of Byron Hamburgers, after leaving his role as global brand director at Wagamama last month.
He will join the company in the newly created post in July, reporting to acting executive chairman Dalton Philips, until the search for a new chief executive is completed. It was announced last week that Andrew Manders, the former KPMG executive and managing director of Fired Earth - appointed chief executive at the end of 2016 following the departure of Byron's founder Tom Byng - is to leave the business for "personal reasons".
Private equity company Hutton Collins, which owns both Byron Hamburgers and Wagamama, paid £100m for Byron in 2013.
Cope will join Byron, which operates 71 outlets in the UK, in July and will be involved in the evolution of the brand, focusing on marketing, food development and property.
Cope, who spent 12 years at Mitchells & Butler before joining Wagamama in 2013, said he is "delighted" to be joining such "an inspirational team" within an expanding company. "As the pioneers of proper hamburgers in the UK, Byron is uniquely well placed to take advantage of the significant growth opportunity that exists for premium brands in the UK's casual dining market."
Philips added: "I'm thrilled that Simon's joining the team. Coming from within the Hutton Collins family, he brings with him a wealth of experience and great ideas, with a first class track record of delivery. He knows this sector inside out, and we're delighted he's joining the team."
Photo by Bryon Hamburgers Ltd