Jon Knight, chief executive of the Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group (main image), and Mos Shamel, CEO of Las Iguanas, are among the first big name keynote speakers to be confirmed for this year’s Commercial Kitchen how.
Executive chefs from Wagamama, Loungers, The Alchemist, and The Restaurant Group have also been announced today as the countdown begins to the fourth edition of the show, which takes place on June 4-5 at the NEC.
Mr Shamel’s exclusive opening day keynote interview will prove a popular draw for many. Known throughout the industry for his inspirational approach to leadership and team development, he has been integral to the growth of the authentic Latin American casual dining brand for over 15 years.
He started with the brand back in 2004 as operations director when it had just six sites and took over as CEO in 2015. It now runs 55 sites nationwide.
“Commercial Kitchen show is incredibly important to the sector it serves,” said Mr Shamel (pictured below). “I intend to share some success stories that are relevant and also to warn others of pitfalls that I have encountered. We are constantly innovating to stay ahead and feel new and exciting to consumers. It’s tougher than ever to stay attractive and relevant.”
Mr Shamel’s keynote will take place at 2.15pm on Tuesday 4 June.
Meanwhile, Jon Knight, CEO of the Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group, will be sharing details of his brand’s refresh and how the business is fighting back after a challenging 12 months at 2.15pm on Wednesday 5 June.
A candid keynote speaker and interviewee, he’ll be giving plenty of food for thought – delving into difficult times and discussing his approach to rediscovering the potential of the business.
He said: “Commercial Kitchen is informative, industry relevant and network driven. It gives us a great insight into how technologies are keeping abreast of trends and how to optimise business efficiencies and ways of working.”
Commercial Kitchen’s panel sessions – focusing on specific types of kitchens and featuring the leading exec chefs, food chiefs and industry influencers working within them – were a popular hit last year. That format is back for 2019, plus with an extra show theatre, even more big names are lining up to take part.
Three of the industry’s top culinary masters – Simon Xavier, executive chef at The Restaurant Group (Chiquito), Antony Bennett, head of food at Loungers and Steven Mangleshot, executive chef at Wagamama – will be sharing their expertise in the ‘Multisite kitchen panel’.
Recently confirmed speakers this year also include Seamus O’Donnell, executive chef at The Alchemist Bars & Restaurants, who will talk about his chain’s latest kitchen plans in the ‘Pub panel’: “I pride myself in having quality equipment, which matches our customer and staff expectations. Commercial Kitchen enables me to identify the products we need that are on the market.”
Alun Sperring, chef/owner of The Chilli Pickle, is the first addition to the new ‘Indian Restaurant Kitchens panel’. The session will be chaired by chef and food consultant Jay Morjaria, an investment winner on the BBC’s My Million Pound Menu last year for his innovative East Asian restaurant concept ‘Dynasty’.
Commercial Kitchen returns to the NEC Birmingham on 4-5 June 2019. For further information and to register for a free trade ticket, please click HERE.