Muscle Maker, Inc. (GRIL) Announces First Combo Restaurant - Adding Pokemoto to Existing Muscle Maker Grill Restaurant in New York City

Company Brings Both Brands Under One Roof, Reducing Overhead Expenses While Leveraging Existing Personnel

Fort Worth, Texas, Jan. 19, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Muscle Maker, Inc. (Nasdaq: GRIL), today announced a new combo restaurant strategy that focuses on adding full Pokemoto restaurants inside existing Muscle Maker Grill locations. The objective is to have two of the company’s brands operating under one roof reducing overhead costs, leveraging existing personnel and achieving other efficiencies. The combo restaurant will offer both Muscle Maker Grill and Pokemoto menus to consumers within the same location. The combo unit that includes two of Muscle Maker, Inc.’s “healthier for you” brands is the first for the company.

The first Muscle Maker Grill location to be converted to the new combo unit is located at 70 7th Avenue in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York City. The current Muscle Maker Grill employees will learn the linear scoop and go Pokemoto model to be able to serve guests menu items from both brands. The design and construction phase of the new combo restaurant has started with an anticipated Q1 grand opening date. The interior will be updated to include the new design elements for the Pokemoto brand but will still feature Muscle Maker décor. The Muscle Maker Grill location will remain open during the construction phase of the project.

Pokemoto will add build your own poke bowls, salads and burritos to the current Muscle Maker Grill offerings of wraps, bowls and burgers giving guests even more “healthier for you” options. Pokemoto will add a lineup of fruit and milk boba teas to Muscle Maker Grill’s real fruit smoothies and protein shakes. Both brands will be available for dine in or takeout and will be offered via online ordering and third party delivery platforms such as UberEats, DoorDash and GrubHub.

Earlier this week the company announced that it’s now approved to sell franchises in the state of New York. Pokemoto currently has one location open in White Plains, New York with a second location under construction in Tarrytown, New York. The Tarrytown location is slated to open over the next few weeks. The Chelsea area Muscle Maker Grill and Pokemoto combo unit will be the third New York location on the Pokemoto map increasing the brand’s exposure not only for guests who enjoy the food but prospective franchisees as well.

“We’ve just shared that we’ve crossed the milestone of adding New York to the list of states where we can sell Pokemoto franchises and now we’re putting our foot on the gas by adding our first ever brick and mortar combo unit in New York City; another location for prospective franchisees to engage with the Pokemoto brand.” said Michael Roper, CEO. He continued, “Pokemoto already has a presence in surrounding states including New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island, and we’re continuing to increase that footprint with a location under construction in Tarrytown, New York and now the Muscle Maker Grill and Pokemoto combo unit in the Chelsea neighborhood in New York City, the most populous city in the United States. We can’t wait to offer our current Muscle Maker Grill guests the Pokemoto lineup while introducing our combo unit model.”

Roper shared more details on the company’s growth plan “While Pokemoto franchising remains our primary focus, we’re in the process of looking closely at our existing Muscle Maker Grill locations to explore adding Pokemoto to increase its footprint as well as our topline sales. In instances where we cannot add a Pokemoto as part of a combo unit, we may fully convert the location over to a Pokemoto. In 2022, we converted a Muscle Maker Grill to a Pokemoto on the Fort Meade military base and have experienced an improvement of top line revenue growth at Fort Meade of over 300% and continue to be very pleased with the results. We’ll continue to explore every option when it comes to optimizing our brands.”

About Pokemoto

Pokemoto, a Hawaiian Poke bowl concept known for its modern culinary twist on a traditional Hawaiian classic has open or coming soon locations in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Florida, Maryland, Virginia, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, South Carolina, Georgia, Mississippi, Kansas and California. Pokemoto offers contemporary flavors with fresh delectable ingredients that appeals to foodies, health enthusiasts, and sushi-lovers everywhere. Guests can choose from a list of signature bowls or be bold and build their own unique combination of a base, protein, various toppings and nine different sauces. Vegetarian options are available, and the bowl combinations are virtually limitless. The colorful dishes and modern chic dining rooms provide an uplifting dining experience for guests of all ages. Customers can dine in-store or order online via third party delivery apps for contactless delivery.

About Muscle Maker Grill

Muscle Maker Grill was Founded in 1995 in New Jersey and features “healthier for you” high quality, great tasting food, freshly prepared with proprietary recipes. The menu created with the guest’s health in mind, is lean and protein-based. It features chicken, grass-fed steak, turkey, pasta, burgers, wraps, entrée salads and more. It also offers a wide variety of fruit smoothies in a variety of assorted flavors, protein shakes and supplements.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release may include “forward-looking statements” pursuant to the “safe harbor” provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. To the extent that the information presented in this press release discusses financial projections, information, or expectations about our business plans, results of operations, products or markets, or otherwise makes statements about future events, such statements are forward-looking. Such forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as “should”, “may,” “intends,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “estimates,” “projects,” “forecasts,” “expects,” “plans,” and “proposes.” Although we believe that the expectations reflected in these forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, there are a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from such forward-looking statements. You are urged to carefully review and consider any cautionary statements and other disclosures, including the statements made under the heading “Risk Factors” and elsewhere in documents that we file from time to time with the SEC. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of the document in which they are contained, and Muscle Maker, Inc., does not undertake any duty to update any forward-looking statements except as may be required by law.

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