Donatos Pizza has announced the promotion of Tom Krouse to chief executive officer, a title previously held by the company’s founder, Jim Grote. Krouse was most recently appointed to head the company’s retail distribution channel, Jane’s Dough Foods, which supplies private label take ‘n’ bake pizza to the retail sector. He has been with the company 10 years.
The company also has announced the appointment of Jane Grote Abell to chairman of the board. As owners, Jim Grote will continue his involvement in the business as founder, and Grote Abell will continue to be involved in the strategic direction of the business.
Since the Grote family purchased Donatos back from McDonald’s in 2003, the company has placed a primary focus on growth through franchise initiatives, and the development of their Jane’s Dough Foods division. Tom Krouse, in his previous role as president of expansion brands, led this franchise growth initiative.
Krouse brings with him more than 25 years of restaurant branding experience, most recently with Wendy’s International as vice president of marketing. While at Donatos, he has played key roles in many different areas of the company including Jane’s Dough Foods, Donatos menu development, marketing, franchise growth, IT and supply chain management.
Grote Abell’s focus has always been on Donatos’ products and people. She was the driving force in buying the company back from McDonald’s and was instrumental in restoring the company’s financial stability. Her leadership has guided Donatos through uncharted economic times all while preparing the brand for growth.
“We are excited to announce the promotions of both Tom and Jane,” Grote said. “Both have done an outstanding job of helping to grow the Donatos and Jane’s Dough brands through development rights for an additional 250 franchise stores, and retail commitments for Jane’s Dough Foods now totaling over 1400 points of distribution.”