i9 Sports®, the nation’s first and fastest-growing youth sports league franchise, announced today promotions for key brand leaders including company president Brian Sanders to the position of chief executive officer and Kim Armellino to vice president of finance and administration. Additionally, Jesus Romo has joined i9 Sports in the newly created position of vice president of operations. This announcement comes on the heels of a record-breaking year for i9 Sports, recently generating the highest number of registrations of any season in its history with a 10 percent increase in same franchise unit registrations during the third quarter of 2015.
“Brian, Kim and Jesus are all industry veterans who bring an immense wealth of knowledge and experience to the table, and we’re thrilled to expand and strengthen our leadership team as we head into 2016,” said Frank Fiume, founder and chairman of i9 Sports. “Brian and Kim have been integral forces in our company’s formation and growth, and we are excited to watch them continue to thrive in the new chapters of their careers at i9 Sports. Additionally, we look forward to leveraging Jesus’ impressive franchising experience to further catapult our brand’s development and help maintain the momentum we generated in 2015.”
After serving as president and chief operating officer of i9 Sports for the past seven years, Brian Sanders has been promoted to chief executive officer. Frank Fiume, the company’s founder and former chief executive officer, will remain on board as chairman and will serve as an advisor to Sanders in his new role. As one of the original architects of the signature i9 Sports Experience®, Sanders had a key role in shaping the company’s philosophy and vision for its future, and has continually displayed his exceptional leadership skills. In his new role as chief executive officer, he will continue to drive the company’s national expansion while working with the executive team to implement system-wide growth strategies designed to help ensure each i9 Sports franchise is successful and profitable.
Kim Armellino has been with i9 Sports since its inception, most recently as vice president of finance, and will be taking on a new role as vice president of finance and administration. In addition to managing all of the company’s financial processes including bookkeeping, invoicing, budgeting, forecasting and spearheading the annual audit and financial reports, she will be overseeing a variety of internal operations including human resources, purchasing and contracts and office administration. Armellino’s expertise is helping to control costs, which will be leveraged in her new role to help franchisees improve their bottom lines.
Bringing more than 19 years of experience in franchise operations, industry trailblazer Jesus Romo has joined i9 Sports as vice president of operations. Romo previously served as vice president of operations for Mr. Gatti’s, and prior to that he worked for YUM! Brands in their Pizza Hut division in a variety of roles including director of operations, senior human resources manager, training and development manager and district manager. In his newly created role at i9 Sports, Romo will be responsible for managing the company’s franchise business coaches, the help desk, customer service center and IT department, as well as developing strategies that will drive same-location results and continuing to improve customer satisfaction across the network.
i9 Sports plans to open dozens of new franchise locations each year over the next several years and has extensive franchise opportunities available across the country including a focus on markets in the Pacific Coast, Midwest and Northeast. The youth sports franchise is seeking qualified candidates with a desire to impact their local community. While sports experience is not required, the ideal candidate should have an entrepreneurial spirit and a passion to build a successful business with a community focus. For more information about franchising with i9 Sports please visit, www.i9sportsfranchise.com.
About i9 Sports®
Based in the Tampa Bay, Florida area, i9 Sports® is the first and fastest-growing youth sports league franchise company in the United States. With more than 1,000,000 registrations in communities from New York to Hawaii, i9 Sports offers leagues, camps, and clinics for boys and girls ages 3-14 in today’s most popular team sports such as flag football, soccer, basketball and baseball. A privately held company, i9 Sports was founded in 2003 by CEO Frank Fiume on the principle that the number one reason kids play organized sports is to have fun, not to become the next draft pick. Reinventing the youth sports industry, customers enjoy the i9 Sports Experience which emphasizes fun, safety and convenience as well as teaching the value of good sportsmanship. Named #1 Children’s Fitness Franchise by Entrepreneur Magazine, i9 Sports has been ranked in their prestigious Franchise 500® issue the past eight years. i9 Sports has also been listed among INC Magazine’s 5000 Fastest Growing Companies for the past five years and received Franchise Business Review’s Top 50 in Franchise Satisfaction Award for five years.