Frances Zwick had a flight scheduled on September 11 to depart to Los Angeles to pursue a career in theatre. However, due to the horrific attack that happened that day, she decided to stay put. This decision eventually caused Zwick to pursue an entirely different path in the restaurant industry, and one that has led to her becoming a proud partner in a Buffalo Wings & Rings franchise ownership group. That partnership began with an initial investment with the group and has continued to grow behind Zwick’s tireless work ethic and dedication to growth.
But before getting involved in restaurant management, Zwick’s journey began at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park where she worked for a number of years. Her foray into the restaurant industry began at LaRosa’s where her love for the industry sparked. After demonstrating talent for hospitality and management, the local owners asked if she wanted to become an Assistant Manager of the Greendale LaRosa’s location and she accepted. Zwick worked her way up the ranks and was eventually promoted to General Manager, overseeing all operations for the Greendale location to this day.
It was during her time at LaRosa’s that Zwick met her current business partners, Chip Perfect, Randy Maxwell and Tim Doll. Perfect, Maxwell and Doll were all heavily involved in restaurant management throughout the greater Greendale area and were looking for their next business venture. Zwick saw the success they had achieved with their LaRosa’s locations and joined them as they signed on to expand their portfolio both with Jimmy John’s and by signing up to open three Buffalo Wings & Rings.
“I knew they were the right partners for me,” said Zwick. “We all have such diverse business backgrounds and it seemed like the right fit for us all.”
The decision to invest in Buffalo Wings & Rings was initially fueled by Maxwell, a former college athlete whose entire family was passionate about sports. Maxwell had long dreamed of opening a family style sports concept in the area. The new business partners explored a variety of different brands to consider, but the Buffalo Wings & Rings business model stood out to them the most. But while the team was excited about the opportunity, Zwick admittedly didn’t have the same passion for a sports restaurant. That is, until she had a chance to meet the leadership at Buffalo Wings & Rings.
“At first, I didn’t know what to think about the idea of opening a sports restaurant. Wings and sports didn’t seem like the ultimate fit for me. But after interacting with the corporate team for a few days, I knew it was the right brand for my business partners and I,” said Zwick.
Zwick was impressed by the quality of the menu items and the upscale feeling the brand elicited right off the bat. Not to mention, a major added perk was the strong support she felt from the corporate team.
“I instantly fell in love with their system. It was very different from the other ones I looked at and I knew right away that they were invested in me and I was invested in them. They want to see each franchisee succeed,” said Zwick.
Similarly, the Buffalo Wings & Rings team was impressed by Zwick and that only increased when they got to see her in action after the franchise group opened their first Buffalo Wings & Rings location in Greendale.
“Her leadership is incredible and she has tremendous people skills,” said Philip Schram, Chief Development Officer of Buffalo Wings & Rings. “She’s very good with hospitality. But also, her drive to grow her own enterprise is impressive. She really understands how to invest intelligently. She also trusts the model and is able to execute it extremely successfully.”
With the first Buffalo Wings & Rings open in Greendale, Zwick and her partners are slated to open their second restaurant in nearby Union, Kentucky by the end of 2019.
“The Union restaurant will be very close to the Greendale location, and opening restaurants in adjacent markets is a great strategy for success,” said Schram. “They will be able to leverage synergy between the units. Guests will recognize the owners and management across both locations, and they will be able to double the impact of their local marketing efforts. We are very excited for them to get open and serving the Union community.”
While Zwick prepares for the opening of the Union Buffalo Wings & Rings she remains committed to increasing the profitability of the group’s existing restaurant properties.
“The key to continuing the growth of our portfolio is to maximize profitability,” said Zwick. “That gives me the confidence, and my partners and husband the confidence, to reinvest those profits into additional franchise expansion.”