Having decamped from the US to Australia, Clovis Young realised there was a gap in the market for his favourite kind of food – Baja Mexican.
Not only did he feel that he could do it better than what was already offered, but he also envisioned a new kind of service model – “fast casual”, which combined speedy delivery with quality food.
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Having left behind a career on Wall Street, Young was pitched headfirst into the Sydney food scene, giving diners the choice of a customisable menu and banning the usual Mexican stereotypes of donkeys and sombreros.
There were difficulties along the way. Young went through three different graphic designers before he got the result he was after, as well as facing the problem of hiring an entire workforce.
But Young says he likes the variety of challenges he faces, as he looks to open a further 12 outlets in 2012.
“As a Wall Street trader my day was routine and often quite dull,” he says.
“At Mad Mex there is never a dull moment. In a given day we will be reviewing strategy, meeting with marketing and PR consultants, looking for new sites, designing new restaurants, working on recipes, meeting franchisees, developing staff and training, etc.”
“When I moved to Australia I had four contacts in my phone and now there are hundreds of people that I have the pleasure of working with.”