Cava now 5 times bigger after completing Zoës Kitchen acquisition

WASHINGTON — Bethesda-based fast casual Mediterranean restaurant chain Cava Group has completed its $300 million acquisition of Plano, Texas-based Mediterranean competitor Zoës Kitchen.

The deal catapults the locally-founded restaurant business from about 70 locations to nearly 350 nationwide.

Cava said it will keep its headquarters in Maryland, but will maintain a “meaningful presence” in Plano. The combined company now has more than 8,000 employees in 24 states.

“Today’s announcement is an exciting milestone for CAVA, and we’re thrilled to welcome Zoës Kitchen to our team. Together, these two brands are united by a shared heritage and passion for exceptional Mediterranean cuisine,” CAVA CEO Brett Schulman said.

The Zoe’s Kitchen brand name will continue to be used for the foreseeable future, CAVA said.

CAVA had grown exponentially even before the acquisition. The company was founded in 2006 by Maryland natives Ted Xenohristos, Ike Grigoropoulos and Dimitri Moshovitis — all three, children of Greek immigrants.

The company’s restaurants include CAVA and its more formal sister chain, Cava Mezze. It also runs Sugo Osteria in Potomac, Maryland and Brusco Luncheonette in Baltimore.

Dips and spread from CAVA are also sold in 250 Whole Foods stores.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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