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BELATTI TO HEAD NEW MANAGEMENT TEAM FOR CHURCH'S AND POPEYES

 BELATTI TO HEAD NEW MANAGEMENT TEAM FOR CHURCH'S AND POPEYES
 ATLANTA, Oct. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Frank J. Belatti has been named chairman and chief executive officer for America's Favorite Chicken Company (AFC, Inc.).
 AFC is the parent company for Popeyes Famous Fried Chicken & Biscuits and Church's Fried Chicken chains, which was formed as a result of a Federal Bankruptcy Court's action yesterday confirming a plan of reorganization for Al Copeland Enterprises, former owner of the chicken chains.
 Belatti is the former president and chief operating officer of Arby's Inc. -- a 2,500-unit restaurant chain -- where he was instrumental in the company's successful turnaround from 1985 to 1991. During his six years with Arby's, the chain grew from $750 million in annual system sales to $1.2 billion. The chain also doubled its number of restaurants during that period.
 Belatti recently served as president and chief operating officer of Hospitality Franchise Systems Inc., the franchiser of Howard Johnson, Ramada and Days Inns hotels.
 "This is a new beginning for all parties involved, especially the employees, franchisees and suppliers of Popeyes and Church's," Belatti said. "It's time now to work together toward building a successful future for this company and positioning both brands for growth through excellence in operations, franchising and marketing. We're very excited about meeting the franchisees and look forward to getting together with the employees in New Orleans, San Antonio and across the country."
 In addition to Belatti, AFC's senior management team includes Kam Nassar, who will take over as executive vice president and chief financial officer, and Dick Holbrook, a 20-year fast-food operations veteran who will serve as executive vice president and chief operating officer.
 Started in 1972, Popeyes Famous Fried Chicken & Biscuits is the third-largest fried chicken chain, with 816 restaurants, 694 of which are franchised. In addition to the United States, Popeyes has operations in Canada, Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Honduras, Guam, Korea, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Japan and the Philippines. Popeyes' 1991 sales were $550 million. The chain is based in New Orleans.
 Church's is a 1,083-unit fast-food chain specializing in southern- style chicken. Currently, the chain has 617 company-owned restaurants and 466 franchises. Also based in New Orleans, Church's has restaurants in 30 states, as well as Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Taiwan, Malaysia and Singapore. Church's 1991 system sales exceeded $513 million.
 -0- 10/21/92
 /CONTACT: Ellen Hartman of Fleishman-Hillard, 404-659-4446, for AFC, Inc./ CO: America's Favorite Chicken Company; Church's Fried Chicken;
 Popeyes Famous Fried Chicken & Biscuits ST: Texas, Louisiana IN: LEI SU:


BR-BN -- AT012 -- 3092 10/21/92 16:23 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 21, 1992
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