Focus Brands announces the following leadership appointments: Julie Younglove-Webb as chief brand officer for Auntie Anne's; Jim Cannon as SVP of design and construction; and Chris Newman as SVP of real estate

Sample article from our Foodservice Industry

January 19, 2023 (press release) –

Focus Brands®, parent company of iconic brands including Auntie Anne's®, Carvel®, Cinnabon®, Jamba®, McAlister's Deli®, Moe's Southwest Grill® and Schlotzsky's®, announced today the appointments of three senior leaders across two areas of the business.

Effective immediately, the following executives will be leading these key business functions within the company:

Julie Younglove-Webb, Chief Brand Officer, Auntie Anne's

Jim Cannon, SVP of Design and Construction

Chris Newman, SVP of Real Estate

"One of the most important investments a leader can make is in recruiting the best talent and assembling the right teams," said Jim Holthouser, CEO of Focus Brands. "Each of these three new leaders bring an impressive depth of talent and expertise to their respective areas of the business and will be critical in driving our continued success. We look forward to seeing all that they'll accomplish at Focus Brands."

Julie Younglove-Webb joins the company as Chief Brand Officer of Auntie Anne's. She will lead the brand's overall strategy and execution of both marketing and operations. With a proven track record of success at major corporations in the retail and restaurant industries, Julie's extensive experience leading businesses, teams, operations and customer experience initiatives will drive Auntie Anne's forward. She joins Focus Brands from Domino's Pizza, where she served as SVP of Corporate Operations in the United States. Prior to her tenure at Domino's, Julie spent 11 years at Potbelly Sandwich Works in various senior leadership positions, including Chief Restaurant Operations Officer.

Jim Cannon is Focus Brands' new SVP of Design & Construction. In this role, he will provide strategic leadership to the design and construction department in developing and managing our brands' prototypes, ensuring locations are successfully designed, built and opened on time and within budget. Boasting a 40-year career in the construction industry, Jim has held a number of noteworthy roles in design & development for quick-service restaurant brands, including Inspire Brands, Arby's, Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen and Jack in the Box. His in-depth knowledge of design & construction, paired with decades of successful team leadership, will help him lead this team in continually enhancing Focus Brands' presence and growth through consistent optimization of brands' locations, space, functionality and attractiveness.

Chris Newman has been named SVP of Real Estate, overseeing all aspects of Focus Brands' real estate strategy to fuel long-term portfolio growth across all seven brands. Chris comes to Focus Brands from Next Chapter Properties LLC, where he led the development of multifamily communities in 4 states as the group's Director of Real Estate. Prior to Next Chapter, Chris spent 12 years as the Director of Real Estate for Jimmy John's. His expertise in real estate transactions and deep industry knowledge will set him up for success in his new role on this critical team.

About Focus Brands 

Atlanta-based Focus Brands® is a leading developer of global multi-channel foodservice brands. Focus Brands, through its affiliate brands, is the franchisor and operator of more than 6,400 restaurants, cafes, ice cream shoppes, and bakeries in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and over 55 foreign countries under the Auntie Anne's®, Carvel®, Cinnabon®, Jamba®, Moe's Southwest Grill®, McAlister's Deli®, and Schlotzsky's® brand names, as well as the Seattle's Best Coffee® brand on certain military bases and in certain international markets. Please visit to learn more.

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