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Vapiano, a USA-based casual restaurant and lounge franchise, has signed a franchise agreement that will see locations open across New York, USA. Christophe Scherman has bought the franchise rights to open Vapiano restaurants across New York and is looking to open his first location in lower Manhattan. Christopher has a degree in management and completed a hospitality management and internship at the Jabel Ali Golf Resort & Spa in Dubai and then an extensive management programme with Hilton Hotels in Germany.

Vapianp currently has 55 locations in 16 countries worldwide. There are six Vapiano locations operating in the USA and the company has recently announced deals for the regions of Houston, Chicago and Atlanta, as well as the agreement for New York.

Christopher said: 'We picked this market knowing it's the number one restaurant market in the country. It's also extremely rare to see New York territory available. The sites we are getting looks at and the way the unit economics are working out, it proved to make more sense for us to move from Europe to New York City. Once you factor in the imbalance between the euro and the dollar, the current economy really works to our advantage. We fully expect to be 50 per cent above Vapiano's average same store sales here in the US. The time is right and the time is now for a concept like Vapiano here in Manhattan.'

Mark Frankel, of Newmark Knight Frank Retail the tenant broker representing Christopher, commented: 'The timing for Vapiano couldn't be better. Prime locations, previously priced too high for casual and fast casual restaurants are back within reach. Landlords are particularly reaching for quality brands that can be positioned to add value to their properties. Dropping rents often combined with aggressive concessions are significantly lowering costs of going into business.'


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