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Next Stage Partners is led by President, Sam Khoury and includes the Next Stage Internal Operating Team, Operating Advisors and Customer Advisors. Next Stage's Internal Operating Team and Operating Advisors are seasoned leaders in agriculture and food, with many being current and former C-Level Executives with Fortune 500 companies. Our Operating Advisors are experts in their industries and provide strategic support to our firm and portfolio companies. Next Stage's Customer Advisors are leaders and C-Level Executives with national restaurant, grocery and retail chain companies, as well as manufacturing companies and agriculture companies and co-ops. Customer Advisors provide strategic advisor support along our investing strategy and cycle from entry to exit. 


Sam Khoury

Since 2014, Sam Khoury has led Next Stage Partners as President. Sam brings over 20 years of experience as an Investor and Operator in the agriculture, food, beverage and restaurant chain sectors. From 2014 to 2015, Sam was an Operating Partner in Residence with CIC Partners. He was also a member of CIC’s Investment Team.​ From 2008 to 2013, Sam was Vice President and held general management responsibilities for the Pizza Hut National Purchasing Co-op (part of the Yum! Brands Co-op).

Sam is a former Board Member of the National Restaurant Association's Executive Supply Chain Board (including a former Member of the Bi-Annual Conference Committee, and Education Committee); a Member of the Innovation Council, Chain Board of Advisors for International Foodservice Manufacturers Association (IFMA), a Member of the Advisory Board of Tiff’s Treats, and Chairman of Local Roots Holdings LLC and Eat in Good Faith LLC. Sam is also a Mentor for Techstars, specifically for the METRO Accelerator for Hospitality.

Sam has also held leadership positions with Tricon Global Restaurants (predecessor to Yum! Brands), PepsiCo, and Cott Beverages Inc.

Eileen Pluard

Eileen is a Senior Advisor with Next Stage Partners LLC (“Next Stage”) providing Next Stage guidance on everything from sourcing investment opportunities to due diligence to post acquisition value building and implementing growth strategies within Next Stage’s food portfolio. Eileen is currently President of Local Roots and Eat In Good Faith LLC and co-leads these companies. Eileen has developed, among other things, the company’s overall strategy and vision, unique marketing approach and game changing products. Eileen is also a member of Next Stage’s Investment Team, and a Board member of Local Roots Holdings LLC and Eat in Good Faith LLC.

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