Michael D. Pruitt
Michael Pruitt founded in 1999, Avenel Financial Group, a boutique merchant banking firm concentrating on value oriented investments both public and private on behalf of 40 families. Mr. Pruitt formed Chanticleer Holdings, now Amergent Hospitality Group, which commenced operations in June 2005 with him as Chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO, roles he continues to serve today. In January 2011, Mr. Pruitt became a director of the board of Hooters of America, LLC and was early investor/board member in Appalachian Mountain Brewery which was sold to Craft Brew Alliance (Nasdaq:BREW) in 2018.Mr. Pruitt received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Coastal Carolina University in Conway, South Carolina, where he played on the 1982 and 83 World Series Baseball teams. Today he sits on the Board of Visitors of the E. Craig Wall Sr. College of Business Administration, the Coastal Education Foundation Board, and the Athletic Committee of the Board of Trustees.
Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Hoelscher is a Certified Public Accountant and has 40 years of accounting and auditing experience. Prior to joining the Company, Mr. Hoelscher was and continues to be the CFO for Mastodon Ventures, Inc., a strategic restaurant advisory firm in Austin, Texas since June 2000. Mr. Hoelscher has considerable restaurant experience having overseen investments in a number of companies owning a variety of restaurant assets including over 100 KFC restaurants, and various other fast casual, casual, fine dining, franchisee and franchisor concepts.
He previously occupied the roles CFO and Chief Accounting Officer at two public companies, serving as CFO and a member of the Board of Directors of Anpath Group Inc., from 2006 to 2015, and as CFO on part-time basis for Enxnet Inc., from 2004 to 2019. Mr. Hoelscher also served as controller and Chief Accounting Officer for Aperian from 1996 to 2000. Prior to 1996 Mr. Hoelscher served as office manager for a regional accounting firm in Texas.
Mr. Hoelscher serves on several board of directors for non-profit organizations as well. He received a Bachelor of Business Administration from West Texas A&M University.
President & Director
Fred joined Chanticleer Holdings, now Amergent Hospitality Group, in November 2018. He found his passion for hospitality after graduating with a B.S. in Business Administration from Lehigh University in 1986. Fred grew a Hooters Restaurant franchise from one location in Omaha, NE, to $70 million, 25 locations in five states including, California, Oregon, Washington, Iowa and Nebraska. In 2008, Fred facilitated San Diego institution Phil’s BBQ’s growth, adding locations and winning USA Today’s best ballpark food with the Padres at Petco Park and franchising in San Diego Regional Airport. In 2013, Fred joined longtime friends and Karl Strauss co-founders to grow the Karl Strauss Brewing Company brand. In 2016 Karl opened their two largest brewpubs and in 2017 Karl was named again to restaurant business magazine’s Future 50 restaurant brands for the 2nd time in four years. Each year, Fred gladly donates his time, talents and/or treasure to many local service and charitable organizations and serves on the state board of directors of the California Restaurant Association and CRAF (California Restaurant Association Foundation).
Executive Vice President of Franchise Development
Mark Whittle comes to Amergent having directed or personally having been involved for over 34 years in the successful development of thousands of new restaurant locations globally. He was responsible for directing the activities of numerous real estate, franchise sales, business consultants, asset management and design/construction professionals and providing superior leadership for the growth of various national and international brands, including Little Caesars Pizza, Churchs Chicken, Focus Brands, and most recently as Chief Development Officer for HOA Brands. His experience includes intimate market knowledge throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, Latin America and South Africa.