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Aloha Poke to open stores in Atlanta market with franchise veteran Randy Elias

Atlanta restaurants will mark Georgia debut

Aloha Poke Co will open stores in the Atlanta market thanks to a new development deal with Randy Elias, an entrepreneur and franchise veteran. The agreement will take the fast casual to the state of Georgia for the first time and open up additional expansion opportunities in 2022.

Elias’ franchising portfolio includes various Moe’s Southwest Grill locations in the Acworth and Cartersville communities, in addition to other brands. He has more than two decades working with fast-casual franchise restaurant concepts.

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“Aloha Poke Co is thrilled to come to Georgia,” said Chris Birkinshaw, chief executive of Aloha Poke Co. “We are happy that the people of Atlanta and surrounding communities will have access to our poke bowls, which infuse delicious, nutritious, and natural ingredients, especially at a time of heightened awareness around the quality and healthfulness of fast-casual menus.”

Franchise partner Elias was attracted to the economics of the brand and the simplicity of operations, with restaurants not focused on cooking product.

“I have seen many different franchise concepts that require complex back-of-house build outs and cooking staff and are now experiencing the strain caused by current labor issues, economic turmoil, and supply chain challenges,” said Elias. “Aloha Poke’s brand development strategy and buildout requires much less to start and maintain, while still offering an attractive return on investment year-over-year. I feel that concepts like Aloha Poke are part of the fast-casual evolution toward offering higher-quality menu offerings as we continue to navigate pandemic-related disruptions.”

News of the Atlanta-area expansion follows the chain’s opening in the Cypress area outside Houston this fall—the first of 11 new stores in the Greater Houston market.

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Chicago-based Aloha Poke Co operates 17 restaurants in Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Texas, Florida, and Washington, DC. The concept offers ahi tuna, Patagonian salmon, and other clean, responsibly sourced ingredients, including sashimi-grade seafood, into its appealing poke bowls.

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