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VooDoo BBQ of New Orleans Ranks 2nd Among BBQ Restaurants on FastCasual.com's Movers & Shakers List

NEW ORLEANS, LA--(Marketwired - Jun 11, 2013) - VooDoo BBQ & Grill, the fast-growing New Orleans BBQ franchise, was one of only two barbecue restaurants that made FastCasual.com's 2013 Movers & Shakers list, an influential ranking of the fast-casual restaurant sector's top franchises, people and trends.

FastCasual.com, an online trade publication devoted to the fast-casual sector, announced the rankings at its banquet in Chicago in May. VooDoo, in its first appearance on the eight-year-old list, ranked 44th overall among 50 fast-casual restaurants that made the list.

"True to its New Orleans roots, the first VooDoo location opened on Mardi Gras on St. Charles Avenue in the heart of NOLA," FastCasual.com wrote in its Movers & Shakers report. "That was 11 years ago, and the chain known for its laid-back atmosphere and slow-smoked barbecue has grown to nearly 60 units. It plans to open five this year and will start developing 38 additional licenses."

"We're thrilled about our inclusion on the FastCasual.com list, and we hope to rise even higher in years to come," said CEO Tony Avila. "It's strong validation of our decision a few years ago to develop mainly fast-casual restaurants. We saw the way the restaurant industry was going."

For the last few years, fast-casual concepts such as McAlister's Deli, Firehouse Subs and Chipotle Mexican Grill -- all of which made FastCasual.com's top 5 -- have exploded in the United States. Eight of the 10 fastest-growing restaurant chains with sales of more than $2 million are fast-casual chains, according to the restaurant consulting and research firm Technomic.

"Fast-casual makes sense for franchisors, franchise owners and guests," Avila said. "It means quality, affordable meals served quickly and at minimal operational expense for owners. It's no wonder the sector is booming."

VooDoo BBQ & Grill opened its first location in New Orleans on Mardi Gras Day 2002 and has expanded to reach 57 planned locations in six states. VooDoo serves competition-style barbecue beef, pork and chicken with unique side dishes, plus salads and sandwiches, in a clean, colorful fast-casual environment. For more information, visit voodoobbq.com or voodoofranchise.com.