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WOWorks Acquires Two Fast-Casual Chains

Multiconcept operator WOWorks added two restaurant chains to the company’s portfolio through its acquisitions of Barberitos Southwestern Grille and Cantina and Zoup! Eatery.

Barberitos Southwestern Grille and Cantina is a Southwestern fast-casual burrito, taco, bowl and salad concept. Founded in 2000 and based in Athens, Ga., the brand has 50 franchisee-owned restaurants and 4 company-owned locations that operate primarily in the Southeast.

Zoup! Eatery is a fast-casual concept that offers soups, broth bowls, salads and sandwiches. Founded in 1998 and based in Southfield, Mich., Zoup! Eatery has 67 franchisee-owned restaurants and 1 corporate-owned location that operates in the northern mid-central states and in Ontario, Canada.

While Zoup! Eatery will join the WOWorks, Zoup! Specialty Products, LLC, will continue to operate separately led by Eric Ersher. He is the founder and previous CEO of Zoup! Systems, LLC.

WOWorks other restaurant concepts include SaladworksFrutta BowlsGarbanzo Mediterranean Fresh and The Simple Greek. The company will end the year with more than 400 units systemwide, per a release.