Pei Wei Asian Diner, the Asian-themed offshoot of P. F. Chang’s China Bistro, will leave its longtime headquarters in Scottsdale, Arizona, and establish a new home base and a new corporate culture in Los Colinas.
Armed with up to $500,000 in incentives from the state and $75,000 from the City of Irving, the fast-casual chain plans to create 100 jobs in North Texas over five years, beginning with moves later this year.
The move will cost the company more than $1.5 million, according to a release issued Wednesday by the office of Gov. Greg Abbott. It is the fifth headquarters relocation that Abbott has secured with the help of the Texas Enterprise Fund.
Some specifics of the incentive package, including the time frame, are still being worked out, the state said.
The move east helps the Arizona-born chain, co-founded by Dallas restaurateur Mark Brezinski, forge its own identity.
“Part of this is not just a headquarters move but it’s really an overall shift in our brand direction,” said John “J.” Hedrick, chief executive of Pei Wei. “We are separating operationally and geographically from our parent company.”
He said he expects most of the jobs, some with an average annual compensation package of $125,000, to be filled largely by North Texans.
“I expect the number to be no more than probably 10 people to relocate,” from Arizona, he said.
“At least 30 jobs will be filled in Irving by the end of next year. That’s our initial hiring target.”
The company will move into about 14,000 square feet in the Las Colinas Highlands, a 7-story building near Dallas Fort Worth International Airport.
It now occupies “significantly less” space in the headquarters building of P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, where it’s been since its founding in 2000.
Hedrick, 41, said the address change is one of several moves that will help the brand operate more independently.
“Now, a large number of people who work on the Pei Wei business also work on the P.F. Chang business,” he said. “As we move here, they will be two separate business units and employees will either be focused on P.F. Chang or Pei Wei. It really allows both brands to create a unique and distinct culture, where P.F. Chang is polished casual and Pei Wei focuses on the fast-casual segment.”
Hedrick noted that many members of the Pei Wei leadership team are new. He was named chief executive in February. The brand also has a new chief marketing officer, and new heads of human resources and information technology.