BRADENTON -- Bradenton's sole Arby's has been sold along with 13 other Tampa Bay locations to an Atlanta company.
Mosaic Investment, headed by Murad Karimi and his brother, Malik Karimi, picked up the company-owned Tampa Bay Arby's in a franchise deal that closed Monday, according to an Arby's representative. The chain employs more than 250 people.
Mosaic also operates multiple locations for Moe's Southwest Grill, Sprint PCS, Metro PCS and Exxon Mobile across the Southeast and Texas. Karimi was named the 2011 New Franchise Partner of the Year for Moe's, increasing sales by 50 percent since taking over in 2010 through a process he calls "Franchising 2.0."
"We are thrilled to join the Arby's brand and family of restaurants," said Murad Karimi, managing partner of Mosaic Investments Inc. "We look forward to bringing Mosaic's successful Franchising 2.0 strategy to Arby's greater Tampa market and building on our proven track record with Arby's strong sales performance, robust product pipeline and outstanding leadership."
Arby's was founded in Boardman, Ohio, in 1964, and its parent company merged with Wendy's in 2008 before splitting and being sold to Altanta-based Roark Capital Group in 2011. Among the 14 Arby's sold, the location at 430 U.S. 41 Bypass, Venice,
is the only other Arby's sold south of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge.
"At Arby's our focus is simple: running great restaurants and driving continuous improvement in all aspects of the guest experience," said George Condos, president and chief operating officer of Arby's Restaurant Group Inc. "Mosiac Investments' proven record of success and passion for the Arby's brand makes them a powerful growth partner for Arby's as well as the greater Tampa market."
The Bradenton Arby's, 3608 1st St. W., is the only Arby's left in Manatee County. A former Arby's on Manatee Avenue is now Derek's Rustic Coastal Cuisine. Another Arby's location, 4715 14st St. W., was purchased in 1993 by Bob Boast Dodge car dealership and was remodeled for a sales lot.
"The future has never been brighter at Arby's. Arby's outperformed the QSR industry in same-store sales last year by 2.6 percent, and we continue to see strong momentum with our franchisees," said Paul Brown, CEO of Atlanta-based Arby's Restaurant Group Inc. "Mr. Karimi brings tremendous food industry experience and the right development capabilities to help us usher in an exciting era of continued growth and development for the brand."
Financing for the deal is being handled through Ameris Bank. The price of the deal was not disclosed.
Charles Schelle, Herald business reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7095. Follow him on Twitter @ImYourChuck.