Is franchising the key to rapid growth?

Fast-casual chains are hotter than a hot grill these days and GrilliT, a fresh, new concept with a nutritional menu made up of ingredients from local growers across the country, has its sights set on becoming the next upstart in the restaurant industry’s most promising category. GrilliT marries fast casual to nutritious and healthy food. The company opened its first restaurant in Miami in 2011 and specializes in chef-inspired custom crafted rice bowls, pasta and wraps as well as salads. GrilliT utilizes domestic farmers, and delivers healthy cuisine using only fresh proteins, such as never-frozen chicken and grass fed beef. The restaurants offer an inviting and comfortable atmosphere with an open kitchen and contemporary, industrial design. GrilliT currently has two restaurants and expects to have at least 21 corporate and 58 franchised locations open and operating within the next five years. The company is targeting Florida, North Carolina, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and Georgia for new growth. CEO Ghazi Hajj talks about the growing Latin-Caribbean fusion concept.