American restaurateur Brad Blum and Brazilian-based investment firm GP Investments have formed FoodFirst Global Restaurants Inc. and acquired two restaurant concepts: Brio Tuscan Grille and Bravo Cucina Italiana.

“By being a private company, this has enabled the liquidity crisis to be solved with much lower debt on the balance sheet and significant investment capital added to profitably grow the business,” Blum said.

FoodFirst’s board of directors includes Blum as chairman and CEO with Antonio Bonchristiano, GP Investments’ CEO, serving as vice chairman. In addition, Bob Mock will join the FoodFirst leadership team serving as chief operating officer and Diane Reed will serve as the company’s chief financial officer, treasurer and secretary.

GP Investments’ restaurant industry experience includes working with such brands as Fogo De Chao and LEON Naturally Fast Food.