Rosinter Restaurants, one of the leading casual dining chains in Russia and the CIS, has appointed Tony Hughes as a non-executive director. Hughes, who was the former managing director of Mitchells & Butlers’ pub-restaurant division, said that he had been working with the company since January. Hughes said: “It is a very exciting company, that is very well built and in the most dynamic market you could currently wish for. “Given the current economic downturn in the UK, Russia is a very exciting place to be at the moment.” Hughes pointed out that the country was booming and that there was plenty of opportunity for growth within the restaurant sector, with lots of wealthy people with large disposable incomes. Rostislav Ordovsky-Tanaevsky Blanco, chairman of the group, said: “Tony has extensive operational experience in the restaurant industry in international companies such as Whitbread, Devenish, Kingfisher and, most recently, at Mitchell's & Butlers where he acted as a member of the Board. Tony is currently also a non-executive director of The Restaurant Group.” Rosinter currently operates 262 outlets, including 72 franchised sites in 29 cities in Russia, the CIS and Central Europe under the Rostick’s KFC, Il Patio, Planet Sushi, American Bar & Grill, TGI Fridays and 1-2-3 Café brands. The group opened around 50 new outlets last year and plans to open a similar number in 2008 as part of its ongoing expansion plans.