UNITED STATES - SSP America, a division of SSP Group, a leading operator of food and beverage brands in travel locations worldwide, has appointed industry veteran Nicholas (Nick) Schaefer as the Vice President of Central and South America. SSP America will be looking at new business opportunities in Central and South America following an extended period of U.S. and Canadian growth since the company’s founding in 2007 - growth driven by a unique focus on bringing authentic restaurants to airports that reflect a taste of place.
Nick will oversee the business SSP currently has in Brazil, Rio de Janeiro/Galeão – Antonio Carlos Jobim International Airport, Salvador - Deputado Luís Eduardo Magalhães International Airport, Fortaleza-Pinto Martins International Airport and Salgado Filho Porto Alegre International Airport and be responsible for all aspects of new business including operations, accounting, information technology, purchasing, design and construction and development. Schaefer commented, “I’m incredibly honored to join SSP America’s winning team - a team dedicated to creating a true culinary experience for passengers. I believe the SSP America approach will resonate with the growing Central and South American aviation marketplace.”
Nick comes to SSP America following a 20-year career marked by executive leadership and ability to dramatically expand businesses by establishing an effective model able to absorb rapid expansion and profitable growth. Nick’s career includes extensive experience with tailoring brands for success in the airport space. Prior to joining SSP America Nick was the Senior Vice President of Franchise and License Development for JAB Holding Company, a global investment company focused on consumer goods and services. Nick oversaw a bagel-focused portfolio of 485 units and $300 million in annual sales which included market leaders Einstein’s Bros and Bruegger’s Bagels. Nick was also the Vice President of Airport Business Development for Delaware North and held non-traditional development roles for Restaurant Growth Brands, Extreme Pita and Quiznos. Nick has a degree in Chemical Engineering from Michigan State University and prior to his aviation career worked as an engineer and in sales roles for the automotive division of Groupe Schneider Electric.
Deputy Chief Executive Officer and President of Central and South America for SSP America Pat Murray commented, “Our goal is to share the SSP America story across the whole of two continents given the universal appeal of our core values. We’ve been making steady progress since entering Brazil in 2018 and Nick’s coming on board is an important step in helping us identify even more opportunities in this exciting market.”