CiCi's Pizza has named two new directors to help the company in its "Build the Brand" growth strategy.

Clif Geisler, who brings purchasing and supply chain experience from Brinker International and Sonic, has been named as CiCi's first-ever director of Operational Systems. He will spearhead initiatives to improve kitchen efficiencies and increase dining space in an effort to lower franchise investment costs, reduce waste and increase ROI.

Geisler is already leading company-wide equipment testing, such as pursuing induction heating to improve the quality and consistency of CiCi's soup, pastas and sauces.

Rebecca Stone has been named as senior director of Food and Beverage. She has research and development experience with major brands including Pizza Hut, Little Caesar's, Domino's Pizza, Romano's Macaroni Grill and Burger King, and will lead and improve CiCi's R&D process. Through her expertise, the company has already launched a comprehensive new product testing initiative designed to incorporate guest and franchisee feedback early in the product development process.

Recent product innovations include CiCi's American Classics line, which showcases the unique flavor traditions of the U.S. As part of the American Classics line, CiCi's also announced the Cheeseburger Pizza and the Philly Cheesesteak Pizza. The company has plans to announce additional new products this year.

In 2010, the company began implementing a growth strategy designed to add another 500 restaurants throughout the next 10 years.

"Our growth initiative is well underway with 25 restaurant openings planned this year, the hiring of our two new industry veterans, increased restaurant efficiencies for franchisees and especially new product rollouts for our guests," said Mike Shumsky, CiCi's Pizza CEO. "We know our guests continue to consider all dining decisions carefully, and we're committed to innovate as we grow to ensure each dining experience at CiCi's is better than the last."

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