By JAN WADDY
News Herald Features Editor
PANAMA CITY — Since reopening Bennigan’s at the Panama City Mall as a corporate store in July 2016, Chairman and CEO Paul Mangiamele has delivered on promises — while continuing to build on them.
He and his wife, Gwen, of Legendary Restaurant Brands LLC (Bennigan’s and Steak and Ale) hosted 150 guests from around the world at the Bennigan’s Global Franchisee and GM Conference Private Reception on Feb. 19 at the Bennigan’s flagship store.
“It was the warmest, sweetest love fest and eat fest ever,” said Paul, who has led the renaissance of Bennigan’s worldwide since 2011. “Between Benningan’s, Bennigan’s On the Fly and Steak and Ale, we have 156 stores open or under contract.”
The American brand, which has been international for a long time, continues to spread across the globe. Some international franchisee owners are reconnecting with an experience they had at a Bennigan’s while attending school in the U.S.