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Crushed Red Prepares for National Growth

Crushed Red, a self-described artisan-fast chopped salad concept, has taken on two new equity partners: Dave Peacock, former Anheuser Busch president, and Dean VandeKamp, former Ernst & Young partner. This represents Peacock and VandeKamp’s second investment in the food and beverage space after forming Vitaligent 18 months ago and acquiring 77 Jamba Juice locations on the West Coast.lowrescrushedredInteriorAn inside view of a Crushed Red store.

The Crushed Red headquarters will join Vitaligent at 190 Carondelet Plaza in Clayton, Mo., just a few blocks from the Clayton Crushed Red location.

With this new equity partnership, Powell Kalish, who co-founded the brand with CEO Chris LaRocca, becomes chief development officer. He will join the corporate team full time and his duties will include real estate development and franchisee operations.

Crushed Red operates six units with franchise agreements for two dozen more, per a release announcing the deal. “We see Crushed Red moving quickly from a growing regional brand to a national player. The top-line is growing nicely and its economics are very attractive to franchisees. Our infrastructure will support their growth and give them the power to drive up unit-level profitability,” said VandeKamp.