Noodles & Co executive to lead Portillo's
The company said founder Dick Portillo will remain active with the company. Since selling his restaurants to Boston-based Berkshire Partners, he still owns the real estate where the restaurants are located and collects rent from Berkshire.
"Keith has a strong track record growing two of the best fast-casual restaurants in the industry," Michael A. Miles Jr., Berkshire Partners advisory director, said in a statement. "He is the ideal person to lead the next chapter at Portillo's. Under his leadership, Portillo's will be able to expand to more locations across the country."
Kinsey replaces Dick Portillo, who sold the company last year so he could spend more time with his family and see the company expand to all 50 states. Portillo's has 39 restaurants in Illinois, Indiana, California, Arizona and soon-to-come in Florida.
"I am very pleased that Keith will be the next CEO of Portillo's," Portillo, 75, said in a statement. "He has the right experience and values to lead the business into the future -- building upon 52 years of great food and fast, friendly service."
Kinsey lives around Broomfield, Colorado, where Noodles is based.
"He hasn't said where he'll move yet," said Portillo's spokesman Nick Scarpino.
Kinsey attended the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana, where he received his bachelor of science degree in accounting and CPA, the company said.
Kinsey became chief financial officer in 2005 and was named president and chief operating officer in 2007 at Noodles. As president and COO, Kinsey was responsible for opening new restaurants in proven, developing and new markets, the companies said.
Before Noodles, Kinsey served in an operations leadership role at Chipotle. While there, he was instrumental in growing the company to more than 400 sites and was responsible for building the West coast region from three to 70 sites, the companies said.