At the age of 25, Bianca Azzopardi, CEO of Zambrero, has taken home the ‘Rising Star’ award at the 2018 QSR Media Detpak Conference & Awards.
Azzopardi is CEO of Zambrero – Australia’s largest Mexican restaurant franchise chain and one of the country’s fastest growing companies with over 190 restaurants globally. Through the Plate 4 Plate initiative, every bowl or burrito purchased donates a meal to someone in need. Since it was founded in 2005, Zambrero has donated over 23 million meals, with a goal to donate one billion by 2025.
The QSR ‘Rising Star’ award is for executives under 30 years of age and aims to recognise and reward an individual’s contribution in the quick service restaurant industry. Under Azzopardi’s leadership, Zambrero has opened 45 restaurants globally.
Azzopardi follows in the footsteps of Zambrero founder; Dr Sam Prince, who founded the healthy Mexican restaurant chain at the age of 21. Having been a part of the Zambrero family for over five years, Azzopardi was appointed CEO in January 2017, having previously held the role of International Commercial Director.
Her exertion within this international stream came to fruition this March with expansion into the USA, with two company owned restaurants in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.
“I feel incredibly honoured in this position. I’ve seen Zambrero grow and accomplish amazing things in the last five years. This award is a celebration of that and what is to come. My focus is now on continuing to support and grow our franchise partners and ensure we hit our goal of donating one billion meals by 2025. As the number of people affected by hunger has increased by 38 million in the last yearalone, now more than ever we need to do everything we can to combat world hunger,” she says.
Azzopardi was introduced to Zambrero whilst achieving a Bachelor of Business at UTS Business School – completing a project case study and an internship. She was offered a full-time position as HR Assistant and within a year became HR Manager for the entire Sam Prince Group, securing one of the industry’s premier accolades – HR Manager of the Year at the 2015 HR Awards.