Marble Slab Creamery is a chain of independently owned and operated franchised stores that specialize in serving ice cream and a variety of other desserts. It is a franchise brand in the portfolio of Global Franchise Group LLC. There are 391 Marble Slab stores throughout the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Pakistan, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Lebanon, Qatar, Scotland, Iraq, England and Trinidad and Tobago. The chain has its headquarters in unincorporated Fulton County, Georgia. As an independent company it had its headquarters in the Westchase area of Houston, Texas. After the NexCen acquisition, initially the brands headquarters were in unincorporated Gwinnett County, Georgia. In July 2010, NexCen announced the sale of its franchise business to Global Franchise Group, LLC an affiliate of Levine Leichtman Capital Partners. Marble Slab, which began as a single unit operation called Cones & Cream, was founded in Houston by chefs Penn and LaPage in 1983. They were inspired by Steve Herrell of Herrell’s Ice Cream in Boston, who pioneered the mixin approach to ice cream toppings. In 1986, Marble Slab became the first ice cream treatery to use a frozen granite slab to blend mix-in toppings into the ice cream. Later that year, Marble Slab was bought by Ronnie Hankamer of Texas, who laid the groundwork for the brands franchising concept. In the past few years, Marble Slab has expanded beyond its southeastern presence and has become a fast-growing franchise. In 2007 it was ranked in Entrepreneur Magazines Franchise 500 (#93), Fastest-Growing Franchises (#72), and Americas Top Global Franchises (#75).