The Real Deal Miami

Future Pollo Tropical restaurants headed to SoFla

Parent company plans "purposeful cannibalization" in South Florida and other markets

August 01, 2015 12:30PM

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About 12  Pollo Tropical locations expected to open in Florida this year.

About 12 Pollo Tropical locations are expected to open in Florida this year.

Publicly traded Fiesta Restaurant Group Inc., parent company of the Pollo Tropical restaurant chain, has plans to open some new Pollo Tropical locations to take part of the customer traffic from clogged South Florida locations.

Fiesta Restaurant Group has raised its targeted number of Pollo Tropical restaurant openings in Florida and other states, including some for the “purposeful cannibalization” of existing high-volume locations, said Timothy P. Taft, president and CEO of Fiesta, told analysts.

“In South Florida, cannibalization relieves some operational stress from high-volume restaurants, provides a better experience for our staff and our customers, while at the same time expands our total market share,” Taft said.

After the Addison, Texas-based parent company released quarterly results for the period ended June 28, including same-store sales growth for its Pollo Tropical and Taco Cabana units, Fiesta Restaurant Group executives told analysts the company is increasing development activity.

Fiesta increased its targeted range of restaurant openings this year to 32-34 from 28-32, almost all of them under the Pollo Tropical brand. Among the planned openings of Pollo Tropical restaurants this year, about a dozen will be in Florida, the brand’s oldest market. [Nation’s Restaurant News] Mike Seemuth