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Taco Cabana names new leadership team to support growth

Mexican fast-casual chain promotes from within to name new VP of Operations and VP of Finance

SAN ANTONIO, Oct. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Taco Cabana, known for its Mexican patio cafe environment and true flavors of Mexico-inspired menu, announced today that two members of its leadership team were promoted to key roles within the company.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20121001/DA84472-a)

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20121001/DA84472-b)

Mark Phillips was promoted to Vice President of Operations and Gerardo Arce was named Vice President of Finance.

With more than 30 years of restaurant experience, Phillips joined Taco Cabana in 1995 as a Regional Vice President. Prior to joining the company, he served as Director of Operations Services for AFC Enterprises, the parent company of Church's Chicken and Popeye's Chicken and Biscuits. Phillips' restaurant experience began in 1979 with a Burger King franchise in Knoxville, Tenn. He later joined the Burger King Corporation in 1982 where he gained experience in restaurant management, domestic and international operations training management, company district management and franchise operations management.

Arce joined Taco Cabana in February 2008 as Director of Finance.  Before joining the company, he served as the Director of Accounting and Financial Planning and Analysis for Masco Contractor Services based in Daytona Beach, Fla. While at Masco, Arce oversaw mergers and acquisitions, operational reporting and analysis, financial process improvements and the annual budget and monthly forecast process. Prior to Masco, he was the Assistant Controller for Cardinal Health, a pharmaceutical distribution company based out of Dublin, Ohio.

"If you look at their track record, it's clear why we decided to promote Mark and Gerardo from within," said Todd Coerver, interim Chief Operating Officer. "They both bring experience, talent and passion for our brand. We've architected this leadership team to reflect our balanced approach to the business – ensuring every move is brand-right, operationally reasonable and fiscally responsible.  As we continue to grow and evolve, I'm thrilled to have these partners as we guide this company and brand to the next level."

About Taco Cabana:

Taco Cabana is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fiesta Restaurant Group, Inc.  Taco Cabana restaurants serve fresh, handmade Mexican food, including sizzling fajitas, quesadillas, hand rolled flautas, enchiladas, burritos, tacos, fresh-made flour tortillas, a selection of "made from scratch" salsas and sauces, frozen margaritas and beer. Most menu items are handmade daily in each restaurant, which feature open display cooking, including fajitas cooking on an open-flame grill and a machine making fresh tortillas. Taco Cabana restaurants feature interior, semi-enclosed and patio dining areas, which provide a vibrant decor and relaxing atmosphere. Additionally, Taco Cabana restaurants provides its guests the option of take-out, as well as the convenience of drive-thru windows. Taco Cabana operates 160 company-owned restaurants, 3 franchised restaurants and 2 licensed restaurants as of Sept. 1, 2012. Become a fan of Taco Cabana on Facebook or follow the company on Twitter. For more information, visit www.tacocabana.com.

About Fiesta Restaurant Group, Inc.

Fiesta Restaurant Group, Inc. owns, operates and franchises the Pollo Tropical® and Taco Cabana® restaurant brands with 250 company-owned and operated restaurants and 41 franchised restaurants in the U.S., Puerto Rico, the Bahamas, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Honduras, Panama, Trinidad & Tobago, and Venezuela as of September 1, 2012. The brands specialize in the operation of fast-casual, ethnic restaurants that offer distinct and unique flavors with a broad appeal at a compelling value. Both brands feature made-from-scratch cooking, fresh salsa bars, and drive-thru service and catering. For more information about Fiesta Restaurant Group, Inc. visit our corporate website at www.frgi.com.


SOURCE Taco Cabana

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