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After serving as outside counsel for eight years to the company that owns Church’s Chicken, Seattle’s Best Coffee and a variety of other eateries, Allan J. Tanenbaum is going in-house. On March 1, he’ll leave a name partnership at Cohen Pollock Merlin Axelrod & Tanenbaum to become general counsel, senior vice president and corporate secretary of AFC Enterprises Inc. The Atlanta-based company, which had sales exceeding $2.1 billion in 1999, also owns brands including Popeyes Chicken & Biscuits, Cinnabon World Famous Cinnamon Rolls, Seattle’s Best Coffee and Torrefazione Italia, another java brand. After 30 years as a business and transactional lawyer, Tanenbaum, 54, says he was attracted to in-house life by the chance to be on AFC’s leadership team and get involved in the business aspects of the company. He has been AFC’s outside counsel since its founding in Atlanta in 1992. He comes to AFC during what appears to be a time of significant change. AFC recently announced plans to go public, to “re-image” some of its 3,600 eateries in 27 countries and to sell more units to franchisees. AFC filed documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission in December that indicate its intent to raise up to $100 million in an initial public offering. Tanenbaum says he’ll help take the company public, though he can’t discuss the timetable for an IPO because AFC is in its quiet period. He’ll report directly to AFC Chairman and CEO Frank Belatti and will manage a six-lawyer in-house legal department that handles franchising, real estate, general corporate transactions and employment issues. He’ll also work with outside counsel including lawyers at his former firm, at IP boutique Needle & Rosenberg, and at Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker. AFC DIVERSITY In addition to the business opportunities that the company offers, Tanenbaum says he was attracted to AFC by its social conscience and commitment to diversity. AFC’s vice president for corporate communications, Ellen Hartman, says about 60 percent of the company’s management, including at the restaurant level, are ethnic minorities. A third of the company’s officers are minorities or women. The law department has two women lawyers, but no minority counsel. Tanenbaum knows his predecessor in the law department well. He spent most of his career practicing with Samuel N. Frankel, AFC’s current general counsel and corporate secretary. Frankel, who recruited Tannenbaum, went in-house with AFC in 1996. He will become AFC’s executive vice president of strategic development and manage its acquisition strategies. Tanenbaum won’t say whether he’ll share Frankel’s status of being among the company’s five highest-paid officers. According to the company’s 2000 S-1, Frankel’s salary was $315,000 in 1999. He also got a bonus of $211,500 and additional compensation of $32,745. In addition to AFC, Tanenbaum’s clients include baseball great Hank Aaron, who is an AFC franchisee, and a number of public and family-owned businesses. Tanenbaum says when he told his clients about his new job, the response was, ” ‘Congratulations, but that won’t affect me, will it? I can still call you, right?’ “ Right, but as a friend, not as a lawyer. Tanenbaum says he expects his clients to remain with Cohen Pollock. H. Stephen Merlin, president of the 16-lawyer Cohen Pollock, says he’s not surprised by Tanenbaum’s move. He sees it as a natural evolution for Tanenbaum, who was very involved in the business of running the law firm and who also helped his clients with their businesses. The firm will make at least one change when he goes, however. Merlin says the name will change to Cohen Pollock Merlin Axelrod & Small. It will incorporate the name of partner Gus H. Small, whose firm, Small, White & Marani, combined with Cohen Pollock a year ago this month.

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