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Ballard Brands

Innovative Food Concepts

Vision icon

our vision

Deliver Our New Orleans Passion for Eating, Drinking, and Living... to the World!

Mission icon

our mission

Provide Exceptional Coffee and Beverages, Flavorful Wings and Food, Premium Services... That Make People Say "WOW"!

Commitment icon

our commitment

Strive for Excellence. Build Winning Teams. Achieve Our Goals. Live Our Values.

Our Core Values

Trust • Integrity • Accountability  •  Goal-Oriented  •  Innovative  •  Family  •  Teamwork  •  Hospitable  •  Passionate  • Creative

A Little History

Ballard Brands is a privately held hospitality and foodservice company formed by brothers Paul, Steven and Scott Ballard. After achieving success as franchisees for Smoothie King and PJ's Coffee in Louisiana, Georgia and North Carolina, the three brothers reunited back in Louisiana to expand their footprint as PJ's franchisees and open the first WOW Cafe (now WOW American Eats) in 2001.  In addition to restaurant operations, management and franchising, the Company has a large catering and special events business and a coffee and tea business. These four primary lines of business are managed from their headquarters in Mandeville, Louisiana just north of New Orleans as well as offices in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The brothers started out as franchisees and grew that experience and knowledge into becoming franchisors. The Franchising Division includes WOW American Eats, PJ’s Coffee of New Orleans, Board House Serious Sandwiches and Buena Onda. These brands are present in 30 states as well as Vietnam and Kuwait. Today there are over 50 WOW American Eats franchised locations and over 150 PJ’s Coffee of New Orleans franchised locations.

The Restaurant Division is comprised of restaurants the brothers own and operate and totals 23 restaurants in 3 states. This Division expanded in July 2018 with the acquisition of the Jose Garces Restaurant Group. Today the restaurant portfolio comprises a variety of brands to include PJ's Coffee, WOW American EatsAmada, Tinto, Village Whiskey, Olde Bar, Volver, JG Domestic and Buena Onda.

The Catering and Restaurant Management Services Division also recently expanded as part of the acquisition of the Jose Garces Restaurant Group. The full-service catering business delivers world-class cuisine and impeccable hospitality to every kind of celebration and also includes exclusive access in the Philadelphia market in venues such as the Kimmel Center for Performing Arts. The restaurant management business provides all restaurant related services from concept development to culinary development to restaurant management.

The Coffee and Tea Division includes a roasting and packaging facility in New Orleans where we source coffee from around the world and then roast, package and distribute it throughout the United States and to our international franchisees. Coffee and Tea is sold through a wide variety of channels to include grocery, convenience and petroleum stores, foodservice, office coffee, hotels, e-commerce, retail locations and on-site food service companies. We also offer private label options. Our coffee division focuses on the top one percent of origin based coffees and includes premium green coffee from our two direct trade farms in Nicaragua and Honduras. 

Company Timeline

PJ's Logo

PJ's Coffee & Tea


First PJ's Coffee location is opened on Maple Street, by Phyllis Jordan

Ballard Brothers

Ballard Brands


Ballard Brothers begin franchise career with Smoothie King and PJ's Coffee

Ballard Brands Logo

Ballard Brands


Ballard Brands is formed

WOW Cafe Logo



WOW Cafe is formed

WOW Cafe Logo



1st non-traditional WOW Cafe opens at Suny Plattsburgh

PJ's Coffee Logo

PJ's Coffee of New Orleans


PJ's Coffee is acquired by the Ballard Brands

New Orleans Roast Logo

New Orleans Roast is formed


New Orleans Roast is formed as a wholesale and CPG concept

Boardhouse Sandwiches Logo

Boardhouse Sandwiches


Ballard Brands acquired Boardhouse Sandwiches and City Diner

PJ's Coffee Logo

PJ's Coffee International


PJ's Coffee goes international, stores open in Kuwait & Vietnam

PJ's Coffee logo

PJ's Coffee


Rebranding of PJ's Coffee

PJ's Coffee logo

PJ's Coffee


PJ's Coffee opens 100th location

Garces Logo



Garces Restaurant Group is acquired

Ideation Hospitality Logo

Ideation Hospitality


Ideation Hospitality is formed by blending the Garces Group and Ballard Brands

WOW American Eats Logo

WOW American Eats


Rebranding of WOW American Eats is launched

PJ's Coffee logo

PJ's DRIVE thru


PJ's Coffee drive thru only model 

PJ's Coffee logo



PJ's Beignet Coffee rollout

New Orleans Roast logo



Rebranding of New Orleans Roast




23 Restaurants owned
200+ open franchises
100+ Restaurants in development
3 managed services accounts
Over 3,000 product accounts

Our team

Paul Ballard Headshot

Paul ballard


Steven Ballard Headshot

Steven ballard


Scott Ballard headshot

scott ballard


Peter Boylan headshot

Peter J. Boylan, III


David Mesa headshot

David Mesa, Jr.

Chief Development Officer
Head of Franchising

Jeff Giavotella headshot

Jeff Giavotella

Chief Financial Officer

Felton Jones headshot

Felton Jones, Jr.

Chief Roastmaster