Garbanzo turns to expansion after rebrand

The Garbanzo chain operates more than 20 restaurants. Photos courtesy of

The Garbanzo chain operates more than 20 restaurants. Photos courtesy of Brand Iron.

The Denver Mediterranean fast-casual chain that gives out free falafel to customers waiting in line has rebranded with a new logo and tweaks to its name and menu.

Eight-year-old Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill is now Garbanzo Fresh Mediterranean. And the company, which has 24 stores, has a new round logo to replace the blocky orange and green banner.

Denver-based marketing firm Brand Iron started work on the rebranding in March.

“The company hadn’t changed much over the last eight years, and it was time for a change,” said Rob Terranova, the chief operating officer at Brand Iron. “We have healthy, fresh items that a lot of places can’t compete with, and it’s a low-calorie food item.”

The chain recently unveiled its new logo (bottom).

The chain recently unveiled its new logo (bottom).

Terranova said his firm took over all marketing for Garbanzo, which used to handle it in-house.

“We simplified the menu, and you can now get anything you want. It’s completely customizable,” Terranova said.

Terranova said that the chain is also adding a gyro cone, which slowly rotates the gyro meat.

“It’s like you’d see in a Mediterranean street bazaar,” he said. “Then it’s sliced right there off the cone.”

Garbanzo’s President Bob Bafundo said the chain paused from expanding its footprint to focus on updating the logos and menus. But now he’s again focused on growth.

“Over the next 18 months, I would see us adding two to three company stores a year in Colorado and 10 franchise stores a year in outside markets,” Bafundo said.

The company sells franchises outside of Colorado and runs company stores in its home state.

Bafundo said he’s particularly focused on markets north of Denver.

“The majority of our stores are south (of downtown Denver),” he said. “There is plenty of infill that we can do in the I-25 corridor north of downtown.”

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