Firehouse Subs on Wednesday named Mike Hancock its new chief operating officer, the first c-level executive for the sandwich chain in more than 10 years.
Hancock comes to Firehouse from sister chain Tim Hortons, where he has been the chief operating officer since 2018. Before that, he spent more than five years in various roles at Burger King. All three brands are owned by the Toronto-based Restaurant Brands International.
Hancock will oversee operations, technology, quality assurance, real estate and other functions for the Jacksonville, Fla.-based chain.
In reality, he replaces Don Fox, who was promoted from COO to CEO in 2009. The company hasn’t had a chief operating officer since then. Hancock is the first new c-level executive since Vince Burchianti was promoted to CFO in 2011. Both Fox and Burchianti remain in their positions with the chain.
Yet the position is designed to bring some of RBI’s strengths to Firehouse. RBI bought Firehouse for $1 billion last year in part because it believes the brand has growth potential in global markets. The deal is also supposed to bring more technology capabilities into the 1,200-unit chain.
Firehouse finished 2021 on a strong note, with same-store sales up more than 24% on a two-year basis in the fourth quarter.
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