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Sbarro announced it has appointed Eric Taylor to a newly created role of vice president of International Franchise Development and Dave Gleason as the vice president of Franchise development to lead the growth of franchises in North America.

These hires come on the heels of Angela Hornsby being named as the brand's new chief people officer and George Wooten as its senior vice president of Operations, and are part of Sbarro's turnaround plan led by CEO and president James Greco.

"We are committed to investing in the brand worldwide and see tremendous opportunity for our franchise development system in the United States and across the globe," Greco said. "By bringing on seasoned restaurant franchise executives such as Eric and Dave, we are laying the groundwork for our evolving brand."

Taylor has worked in the international franchise world since 1999, starting with Franchise Development Services, based in Norwich, England. Prior positions include vice president of Worldwide Franchise Development for Bennigan's Franchising Company and as a consultant for TR Global Management Group representing Applebee's. His international experience includes the sale of master franchises in Mexico, Europe, India, the Middle East and the Caribbean. In his new position, Taylor will oversee, identify, and award franchises to qualified, top-tier candidates worldwide.

Gleason has more than 30 years of experience in the QSR industry in both operations and franchise development. He has worked with brands such as Dunkin Brands, Haagen-Dazs, Manchu WOK and Jamba Juice and was responsible for their development nationally. While working in this capacity, he identified and developed "green field" markets, introduced new design formats to enable speed to market and consistently achieved high performing new unit growth.

Throughout the remainder of 2012, Sbarro will continue to grow with 60 new domestic and international openings planned. In addition, the company will be introducing a new pizza recipe in the fall, and a new prototype restaurant model will be unveiled early next year.

Currently, Sbarro has more than 1,000 restaurants in 40 countries. Sbarro's CEO Jim Greco will speak at Fast Casual Executive Summit in October in San Diego.

Read more about franchising and growth.

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