Tom began his career when he joined the family business and assisted in the operation of a 32 restaurant chain with stores in B.C., Alberta, Quebec and Ontario. Beginning as a Store Manager, he worked his way up to become Vice President Operations before the chain was sold. During this time Tom joined his brother Nick in the development of the Hard Rock Cafes in Canada. Growing to a total of 11 units across Canada, this franchise became one of the leaders and great successes for “themed” restaurants in Canada.
As President and CEO of the Bitove Corporation, Tom was instrumental in winning bids to operate the foodservices at Lester B. Pearson (Toronto) International Airport, the Restaurants and Suite catering at SkyDome (now Rogers Centre) as well as operating Canada’s largest Travel Centre business.
In 1992 Tom and the Bitove Family partnered with Wayne Gretzky to create the only restaurant to which Wayne has lent his name. Located in downtown Toronto, the restaurant opened in 1993 and has become a major tourist attraction as well as an accepted neighbourhood gathering place.
In 1993 Tom’s family was awarded an NBA franchise for Toronto. Tom served on the Board of Directors from the inception during which the Raptors set a number of records for an expansion team including attendance and merchandise sales marks. In 2019, for the first time in franchise history, the Raptors won the NBA Championship. For Tom and the Bitove family, it was a lifelong dream come true.
Today, Tom’s focus is as Chair of PowerBev Inc. and PUR brands Inc., Ontario and B.C.’s exclusive distributor of Red Bull Energy Drink, respectively, as well as ColdHaus Direct Inc. a major distributor of beer and wine in the province of Ontario and the national distributor of Jack Link’s Protein Snacks.
Scholastically, Tom graduated with a degree in economics from Western University.
In the community Tom has participated in a number of roles in Big Brother Big Sisters for many years. He is currently on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee for ProAction, Cops and Kids an organization dedicated to raising funds to support police interaction with youth-at-risk.
Other notable awards and affiliations: