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BONNEY SWAPS COFFEE BEANS FOR BURRITOS

by Simon Lord,
last updated 21/03/2014

in this article:

21 March 2014 - Nathan Bonney of Columbus Coffee is to join Mexicali Fresh as the fast casual dining franchise gears up for rapid growth

After 12 years with Columbus Coffee, Nathan Bonney has been appointed as general manager of fast-growing franchise Mexicali Fresh.  He takes up a new role which has been created due to the rapid expansion of the family-owned company since it began franchising eight months ago.

Nathan has extensive experience in franchise operations. His prior role at Columbus was General Manager - Business Development, where he was instrumental in expanding the brand from 4 to over 60 franchises nationwide and winning multiple Westpac Awards for both the franchise system and its franchisees. His departure was announced to Columbus franchisees at their annual conference on Monday night, where he was presented with a sombrero to help him acclimatise to his new role.

Nathan brings a strong understanding of leading multi-unit franchise operations to Mexicali Nathan Bonney (centre) with Tyler Kerlin (left) and Conor Kerlin: Mexicali Fresh is gearing up for growthFresh and says he is excited to be joining Mexicali Fresh at such a pivotal time in the company’s growth.  

‘Mexicali Fresh is a fantastic brand in a category which is really heating up in New Zealand,’ says Nathan. ‘For me, it’s a case of “back to the future” as Mexicali Fresh is at a similar stage that Columbus Coffee was when I started there. I’m looking forward to the challenge and utilising my knowledge and experience to ensure Mexicali Fresh continues to grow rapidly.’

Mexican food is being tipped as one of the major growth areas in the food business in New Zealand, as an article in the next issue of Franchise New Zealand magazine (published next week) reports. Mexicali has added three new franchises to the existing three company stores in the last eight months.

‘We’ve currently got three additional stores in the design and development process,’ says Mexicali Fresh co-owner Conor Kerlin. ‘One is company-owned and the other two are franchises. With such strong growth, it’s invaluable to have someone of Nathan’s calibre and expertise join the Mexicali Fresh team.’

And the company is looking to explore the growing trend to appointing multi-unit franchisees – another aspect covered in the Franchise New Zealand article.

‘Mexicali’s franchise model fits well with multi-unit operators; this is an area we will be putting a lot of focus on as we aim to increase our growth,” says Nathan.

There are currently Mexicali Fresh stores in Auckland: Princes Wharf, Newmarket, K Road, New Lynn, Constellation Drive, Pukekohe and Victoria Street. Expansion to Ponsonby, Mission Bay and other major centres is planned for this year.

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