Financial Overview - December 2017

 

    Good Times Restaurants Reports Q4 and Fiscal Year End Results

    Total Revenues Increased 31% to $22.5 Million in Q4
    Total Revenues for Fiscal 2017 Increased 23% to $79 Million
    Conference Call Thursday, December 7, 2017, at 3:00 p.m. MT/5:00 p.m. ET
    December 07, 2017 04:05 PM Eastern Standard Time

  • DENVER--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Good Times Restaurants Inc. (NASDAQ: GTIM), operator of Good Times Burgers & Frozen Custard, a regional quick service restaurant chain focused on fresh, high quality, all natural products, and Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar, a full service, upscale concept, today announced its preliminary unaudited financial results for the fourth fiscal quarter ended September 26, 2017.

    Key highlights of the Company’s financial results vs prior year include:

    • Same store sales for company-owned Good Times restaurants increased 3.9% for the quarter and increased 2.1% for the year on top of last year’s increase of 0.3% for the year
    • Same store sales for company-owned Bad Daddy’s restaurants increased 1.4% for the quarter and 1.6% for the year on top of last year’s increase of 1.9% for the quarter and 3.3% for the year
    • Total revenues increased 31% to $22,584,000 for the quarter and increased 23% to $79,080,000 for the year, which reflects the addition of one new Good Times restaurant and six Bad Daddy’s restaurants during the year
    • Subsequent to the year end two additional Bad Daddy’s opened during the first two weeks of October
    • Income from Operations declined by $1,122,000 to a loss of $1,422,000 for the year, which includes the impact of $2,588,000 of new store preopening costs incurred in fiscal 2017.
    • Restaurant Level Operating Profit (a non-GAAP measure) for Good Times restaurants improved to $1,333,000 for the quarter versus $1,313,000 in the same quarter last year*
    • Restaurant Level Operating Profit (a non-GAAP measure) for Bad Daddy’s restaurants improved 28% to $2,081,000 in the fourth quarter from $1,631,000 in the fourth quarter last year*
    • Total Restaurant Level Operating Profit (a non-GAAP measure) increased 16% to $3,414,000 for the quarter and increased 15% to $12,378,000 for the year*
    • Adjusted EBITDA (a non-GAAP measure) for the quarter increased 24% to $1,305,000 from $1,051,000 and increased 12% to $3,777,000 from $3,368,000 for the fiscal year*
    • The Company ended the quarter with $4.3 million in cash and $5.3 million of long term debt

    Boyd Hoback, President & CEO, said, “We are pleased with our results that were slightly ahead of our revised guidance for the fourth quarter, particularly given the intense discounting and value pricing environment in both segments and absorbing the spike in commodity costs that began in our third quarter. For the first nine weeks of our first quarter of fiscal 2018 same store sales are +4.3% for Good Times and +1.7% at Bad Daddy’s. Our class of 2017 new Bad Daddy’s are averaging above our systemwide sales average and we are pleased with their performance as they reach stabilized sales trends after their honeymoon sales periods.”

    Hoback added, “We opened two Bad Daddy’s on October 2nd and October 9th in North Carolina that had been planned for the last two weeks of fiscal 2017 and expect to open an additional seven restaurants during the balance of fiscal 2018. We expect to open our next Bad Daddy’s in the Atlanta, Georgia market in very early January 2018 with additional units following in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. We have eight Bad Daddy’s leases signed and expect to sign an additional four leases by the end of the calendar year for our fiscal 2018 and initial 2019 development.”

    Fiscal 2018 Outlook:
    The Company has confirmed and updated its guidance for fiscal 2018:

    • Total revenues of approximately $100 million to $102 million with a year-end revenue run rate of approximately $109 million to $111 million
    • Total revenue estimates assume same store sales of approximately +3% to +3.5% for Good Times consistently throughout the year and +1% to +2% for Bad Daddy’s.
    • General and administrative expenses of approximately $7.8 million to $8.0 million, including approximately $700,000 of non-cash equity compensation expense
    • The opening of 9 new Bad Daddy’s restaurants (including 2 joint venture units)
    • Net loss of approximately $1.4 million, including pre-opening expenses of approximately $2.5 million
    • Total Adjusted EBITDA* of approximately $5.0 million to $5.5 million
    • Capital expenditures (net of tenant improvement allowances) of approximately $9.5 million including approximately $1.2 million related to fiscal 2019 development

    *For a reconciliation of restaurant level operating profit and Adjusted EBITDA to the most directly comparable financial measures presented in accordance with GAAP and a discussion of why the Company considers them useful, see the financial information schedules accompanying this release.

    Conference Call: Management will host a conference call to discuss its fourth quarter 2017 financial results on Thursday, December 7, 2017 at 3:00 p.m. MT/5:00 p.m. ET. Hosting the call will be Boyd Hoback, President and Chief Executive Officer, and Ryan Zink, Chief Financial Officer.

    The conference call can be accessed live over the phone by dialing (888) 339-0806 and requesting the Good Times Restaurants (GTIM) call. The conference call will also be webcast live from the Company's corporate website www.goodtimesburgers.comunder the Investor section. An archive of the webcast will be available at the same location on the corporate website shortly after the call has concluded.

    About Good Times Restaurants Inc.: Good Times Restaurants Inc. (GTIM) operates Good Times Burgers & Frozen Custard, a regional chain of quick service restaurants located primarily in Colorado, through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Good Times Drive Thru Inc. Good Times provides a menu of high quality all natural hamburgers, 100% all natural chicken tenderloins, fresh frozen custard, natural cut fries, fresh lemonades and other unique offerings. Good Times currently operates and franchises a total of 38 restaurants.

    GTIM also owns, operates, franchises and licenses 26 Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar restaurants through its wholly-owned subsidiaries. Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar is a full service, upscale “small box” restaurant concept featuring a chef driven menu of gourmet signature burgers, chopped salads, appetizers and sandwiches with a full bar and a focus on a selection of craft microbrew beers in a high-energy atmosphere that appeals to a broad consumer base.


  • FAT Brands Inc. Announces Fiscal Third Quarter 2017 Financial Results

    Conference call and webcast will be held at 5:00 p.m. ET today
    November 29, 2017 04:05 PM Eastern Standard Time

  • LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--FAT (Fresh. Authentic. Tasty.) Brands Inc. (NASDAQ:FAT) (“FAT Brands” or the “Company”) today announced financial results for its 13-week fiscal third quarter ended September 24, 2017.

    Andy Wiederhorn, President and CEO of FAT Brands, commented, “We are proud of our third quarter results, which included same-store sales growth of 3.8% at Fatburger and 3.9% at Buffalo’s, despite what remains a challenging industry backdrop. These results continue the trend of seven consecutive years of positive same-store sales for both Fatburger and Buffalo’s franchisees domestically.”

    Wiederhorn continued, “In October we completed our initial public offering with the goal of growing our portfolio of fresh, authentic, and tasty brands. We have developed a strong and actionable pipeline of targets, and recently announced our first deal as a public company, the acquisition of Hurricane Grill & Wings, which is expected to close later this year. There are a number of attractive opportunities to consolidate brands onto our platform as part of our asset light growth strategy, which we believe will drive meaningful value for our shareholders over the long term. We are just getting started.”

    “FAT Brands is built for growth. Our robust management and systems platforms support the expansion of our existing brands, while enabling the accretive acquisition and efficient integration of additional restaurant concepts. This scalable platform generates significant efficiencies in franchise support services and corporate overhead. Pro forma for the Hurricanes acquisition and expected synergies, we expect annualized revenue to exceed $17 million, and annualized adjusted cash earnings of greater than $11 million, or $1.10 per share,” Wiederhorn concluded.

    The Company was formed as a Delaware corporation on March 21, 2017 as a wholly owned subsidiary of Fog Cutter Capital Group Inc. (“FCCG”). The Company was formed for the purpose of completing a public offering and related transactions, and to acquire and continue certain businesses previously conducted by subsidiaries of FCCG. These planned transactions have occurred subsequent to the effective date of the accompanying financial statements, and as a result, the statements of operations, changes in stockholder’s equity, and cash flows reflect that there have been no operating activities in this entity from formation through September 24, 2017.

    The following highlights present the summary historical financial data for Fatburger North America, Inc. and Buffalo’s Franchise Concepts, Inc., which were historically under common control of FCCG and are the predecessors of the issuer, FAT Brands Inc., for financial reporting purposes. The historical financial and other data of Fatburger North America, Inc. and Buffalo’s Franchise Concepts, Inc. have been combined on a pro forma basis through mathematical addition to show how FAT Brands Inc. would have performed if simply combined as one operating entity for the periods presented. These results are not representative of the go forward business due to the subsequent events described below, and do not include results for Ponderosa and Bonanza Steakhouses.

    Fiscal Third Quarter Highlights for Predecessor

    • System-wide sales of $32.9 million, up 7.5% y/y
    • System-wide restaurant count of 174 locations, as compared to 178 locations in the third quarter of last year
    • Same-store sales growth (1) of 3.8% at Fatburger, 3.9% at Buffalo’s
    • Total Revenue of $2.4 million versus $3.0 million in the prior year period
    • Operating Income of $1.6 million versus $2.1 million in the prior year period
    • Net Income of $1.0 million versus $1.3 million in the prior year period
    • EPS of $0.10 as compared to $0.13 in the prior year period
    • EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, of $1.6 million, as compared to $2.1 million in the prior year period

     

     

     

     

     

    (1)

     

    Excludes 2 Fatburger locations that were adversely affected by ongoing construction, and 4 Buffalo’s locations with extraordinary adverse conditions from construction, changes in alcohol laws and political sanctions affecting supply chain

    Subsequent Events
    On October 20, 2017, the Company completed its initial public offering, raising $21.2 million in net proceeds. In connection with the IPO, FCCG contributed its two operating subsidiaries, Fatburger North America, Inc. and Buffalo’s Franchise Concepts Inc. to the Company. Additionally, FCCG consummated the acquisition of Homestyle Dining LLC, and immediately contributed its franchising subsidiaries, Ponderosa Franchising Company; Bonanza Franchising Company; Ponderosa International Development, Inc.; and Puerto Rico Ponderosa, Inc. to FAT Brands.

    On November 15, 2017 the Company announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Hurricane Grill & Wings, a Florida-based restaurant brand with over 60 units open or under construction. The acquisition is expected to close in 2017, subject to customary closing conditions including the receipt of financing.

    Fiscal Third Quarter Highlights Pro Forma for IPO and Acquisition of Ponderosa and Bonanza Steakhouses
    The unaudited pro forma condensed consolidated financial statements are based on FAT Brands’, Fatburger’s, Buffalo’s and Ponderosa’s historical financial statements as adjusted to give effect to the acquisition of Ponderosa. The unaudited pro forma consolidated statements of operations for the 13 weeks ended September 24, 2017, and the 13 weeks ended September 25, 2016 give effect to the acquisitions as if they had occurred on December 28, 2015.

    Please note the pro forma results are before expected synergies, and do not account for the acquisition of Hurricane Grill & Wings, which is expected to close later this year.

    • System-wide sales of $75.9 million, down 0.1% y/y
    • System-wide restaurant count of 292 locations, as compared to 307 locations in the third quarter of last year
    • Same-store sales growth (1) of 3.8% at Fatburger, 3.9% at Buffalo’s, and negative 3.5% at Ponderosa
    • Total Revenue of $3.5 million versus $4.1 million in the prior year period
    • Operating Income of $2.1 million versus $2.6 million in the prior year period
    • Net Income of $1.5 million versus $1.9 million in the prior year period
    • EPS of $0.15 as compared to $0.19 in the prior year period
    • EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, of $2.0 million, as compared to $2.6 million in the prior year period

     

     

     

     

     

    (1)

     

    Excludes 2 Fatburger locations that were adversely affected by ongoing construction, and 4 Buffalo’s locations with extraordinary adverse conditions from construction, changes in alcohol laws and political sanctions affecting supply chain

    Conference Call and Webcast
    FAT Brands will host a conference call and webcast to discuss financial results for the fiscal third quarter 2017, today at 5:00 PM ET. Hosting the call and webcast will be Andy Wiederhorn, President and Chief Executive Officer; and Ron Roe, Chief Financial Officer.

    Interested parties may listen to the conference call via telephone by dialing 1-877-705-6003, or for international callers, 1-201-493-6725. A telephone replay will be available shortly after the call has concluded and can be accessed by dialing 1-844-512-2921, or for international callers, 1-412-317-6671. The passcode is 13673895.

    The webcast will be available at www.fatbrands.com under the invest section, and will be archived on the site shortly after the call has concluded.

    About FAT (Fresh. Authentic. Tasty.) Brands
    FAT Brands (NASDAQ: FAT) is a leading global franchising company that strategically acquires, markets and develops fast casual and casual dining restaurant concepts around the world. The Company currently owns five restaurant brands, Fatburger, Buffalo’s Cafe, Buffalo’s Express and Ponderosa & Bonanza Steakhouses, that have approximately 300 locations open and 300 under development in 32 countries. For more information, please visit www.fatbrands.com.


    Jack in the Box Inc. Reports Fourth Quarter FY 2017 Earnings

    November 29, 2017 04:05 PM Eastern Standard Time

  • SAN DIEGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jack in the Box Inc. (NASDAQ: JACK) today reported earnings from continuing operations of $30.3 million, or $1.02 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter ended October 1, 2017, compared with $32.6 million, or $0.98 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2016. Fiscal 2017 earnings from continuing operations totaled $138.3 million, or $4.47 per diluted share, compared with $126.3 million, or $3.70 per diluted share in fiscal 2016.

    Operating earnings per share, a non-GAAP measure which the company defines as diluted earnings per share from continuing operations on a GAAP basis excluding restructuring charges and gains or losses from refranchising, were $0.73 in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2017 compared with $1.03 in the prior year quarter. For fiscal year 2017, operating earnings per share were $3.88 compared with $3.86 last year.

    The fourth quarter and fiscal year ended October 1, 2017, included 12 weeks and 52 weeks, respectively, as compared to 13 weeks and 53 weeks in the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended October 2, 2016, respectively. The company estimates that the extra week benefited diluted earnings per share by approximately $0.09 in both the fourth quarter and fiscal 2016.

    A reconciliation of non-GAAP measurements to GAAP results is provided below, with additional information included in the attachment to this release. Figures may not add due to rounding.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    12 Weeks
    Ended

    13 Weeks
    Ended

    52 Weeks
    Ended

    53 Weeks
    Ended

    October 1,
    2017

    October 2,
    2016

    October 1,
    2017

    October 2,
    2016

    Diluted earnings per share from continuing operations – GAAP

    $

    1.02

    $

    0.98

    $

    4.47

    $

    3.70

    Restructuring charges

    0.06

    0.05

    0.18

    0.19

    Gains from refranchising

     

    (0.35

    )

     

     

    (0.77

    )

     

    (0.02

    )

    Operating earnings per share – Non-GAAP

    $

    0.73

     

    $

    1.03

    $

    3.88

     

    $

    3.86

     

     

    Restructuring charges of $2.8 million, or approximately $0.06 per diluted share, were recorded during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2017, as compared with $2.3 million, or approximately $0.05 per diluted share, in the prior year quarter. Total restructuring charges in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2017 included $3.6 million related to the evaluation of potential alternatives with respect to Qdoba®, and also reflected a $0.9 million reduction in future lease commitment costs resulting from the early termination of the lease for the Qdoba corporate support center. Restructuring charges are included in "Impairment and other charges, net" in the accompanying consolidated statements of earnings, which increased in the fourth quarter to $9.5 million from $4.5 million in the year ago quarter. Excluding restructuring charges, the increase was due primarily to charges related to the impairment of three underperforming Qdoba locations, as well as impairment and accelerated depreciation of furniture and equipment resulting from Qdoba design changes and remodels, totaling $3.3 million, or approximately $0.07 per diluted share.

    Lenny Comma, chairman and chief executive officer, said, "Our fourth quarter operating results concluded a challenging year for both brands. Our key initiatives in 2018 will be focused on regaining momentum in a highly competitive environment.

    "We continue to make significant progress on our Jack in the Box refranchising initiative, with the sale of 60 restaurants in the fourth quarter and 178 during the fiscal year. We currently have signed non-binding letters of intent with franchisees to sell 32 additional restaurants, and now anticipate the Jack in the Box franchise mix to approach the high end of our previous expected range.

    "The company returned over $376 million to shareholders in fiscal 2017, including over $327 million in share repurchases and $49 million in dividends. We remain committed to returning cash to shareholders in the future as we adjust our capital structure to reflect a less capital-intensive business model."

    The company's Board of Directors, with the assistance of Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, has made substantial progress in its evaluation of potential alternatives with respect to Qdoba, as well as other ways to enhance shareholder value. There can be no assurance that the evaluation process will result in any transaction or other specific course of action. The company does not intend to comment further until the evaluation process is concluded. The company will provide guidance for fiscal 2018 following the completion of the Qdoba evaluation process.

     

    Increase/(decrease) in same-store sales*:

     

     

     

     

    12 Weeks
    Ended

     

     

     

    13 Weeks
    Ended

     

     

     

    52 Weeks
    Ended

     

     

     

    53 Weeks
    Ended

    October 1,
    2017*

    October 2,
    2016

    October 1,
    2017*

    October 2,
    2016

    Jack in the Box:

    Company

    (2.0)%

    0.5%

    (1.1)%

    0.0%

    Franchise

    (0.7)%

    2.4%

    0.9%

    1.6%

    System

    (1.0)%

    2.0%

    0.5%

    1.2%

    Qdoba:

    Company

    (4.0)%

    1.2%

    (3.0)%

    1.7%

    Franchise

    0.0%

    0.4%

    0.4%

    1.1%

    System

    (2.1)%

    0.8%

    (1.4)%

    1.4%

    *Note: Due to the transition from a 53-week to a 52-week fiscal year, year-over-year fiscal period comparisons are offset by one week. The change in same-store sales presented in the 2017 columns uses comparable calendar periods to balance the one-week shift and to provide a clearer year-over-year comparison.

    Jack in the Box system same-store sales decreased 1.0 percent for the quarter and lagged the QSR sandwich segment by 2.9 percentage points for the comparable period, according to The NPD Group’s SalesTrack® Weekly for the 12-week time period ended October 1, 2017. Included in this segment are 16 of the top QSR sandwich and burger chains in the country.

    Company same-store sales decreased 2.0 percent in the fourth quarter driven by a 5.4 percent decrease in transactions, partially offset by average check growth of 3.4 percent. The company estimates that Hurricane Harvey negatively impacted company, franchise and system same-store sales by 40, 20 and 30 basis points, respectively, in the fourth quarter.

    Qdoba same-store sales decreased 2.1 percent system-wide and decreased 4.0 percent for company restaurants in the fourth quarter. Company same-store sales reflected a 6.4 percent decrease in transactions, partially offset by growth in average check and catering sales.

    Consolidated restaurant operating margin, a non-GAAP measure1, decreased by 390 basis points to 15.8 percent of sales in the fourth quarter of 2017, compared with 19.7 percent of sales in the year-ago quarter. Restaurant operating margin for Jack in the Box company restaurants, a non-GAAP measure1, decreased 180 basis points to 19.2 percent of sales. The decrease was due primarily to sales deleverage, higher repairs and maintenance costs and higher labor costs including wage inflation, which were partially offset by a decrease in food and packaging costs as a percentage of sales and the benefit of refranchising activities in 2017. The decrease in food and packaging costs as a percentage of sales resulted from favorable product mix changes and menu price increases, partially offset by commodity inflation of approximately 3.3 percent in the quarter. Restaurant operating margin for Qdoba company restaurants, a non-GAAP measure1, decreased 610 basis points to 11.2 percent of sales. The decrease was due primarily to the impact of new restaurant openings, an increase in food and packaging costs, sales deleverage, and the impact of wage inflation. The increase in food and packaging costs as a percentage of sales was impacted by unfavorable product mix, operating inefficiencies and commodity inflation of approximately 3.6 percent in the quarter, including a more than 50 percent spike in avocado prices, partially offset by a decrease in discounting.

    Franchise margin, a non-GAAP measure1, as a percentage of total franchise revenues decreased to 52.2 percent in the fourth quarter from 53.7 percent in the prior year quarter. The decrease was due primarily to a decrease in rental revenues and royalties related to the 50 franchise-operated Jack in the Box restaurants the company took over in the second and third quarters of fiscal 2017, and an increase in franchise support and other costs. These decreases were partially offset by higher franchise fees related to the sale of 60 company-operated Jack in the Box restaurants to franchisees in the fourth quarter, as well as higher rental revenues and royalties related to the refranchising of 178 Jack in the Box restaurants in the second, third and fourth quarters of fiscal 2017.

    SG&A expense for the fourth quarter decreased by $12.4 million and was 10.6 percent of revenues as compared to 12.1 percent in the prior year quarter. Key items contributing to the decrease were the impact of the company's restructuring activities, a $6.4 million decrease in incentive compensation, a $3.0 million decrease related to the 53rd week in the prior year, a $2.1 million decrease in pension and postretirement benefits, and mark-to-market adjustments on investments supporting the company's non-qualified retirement plans resulting in a $0.7 million year-over-year decrease in SG&A.


    ____________________________

    (1) Restaurant operating margin and franchise margin are non-GAAP measures. These non-GAAP measures are reconciled to consolidated earnings from operations, the most comparable GAAP measure, in the attachment to this release. See "Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Measurements to GAAP Results."

    Interest expense, net, increased by $3.0 million in the fourth quarter due to increased leverage and a higher effective interest rate for 2017.

    The tax rate for the fourth quarter of 2017 was 38.1 percent versus 35.6 percent for the fourth quarter of 2016. The higher tax rate was due primarily to an increase in state taxes and an overall decrease in tax credits.

    Capital Allocation
    The company did not repurchase any shares of its common stock in the fourth quarter of 2017 due to the evaluation of potential alternatives with respect to Qdoba. During fiscal year 2017, the company repurchased approximately 3,220,000 shares at an average price of $101.59 per share for an aggregate cost of $327.2 million. The company currently has approximately $181.0 million remaining under stock buyback programs authorized by the company's Board of Directors that expire in November 2018.

    Conference Call
    The company will host a conference call for financial analysts and investors on Thursday, November 30, 2017, beginning at 8:30 a.m. PT (11:30 a.m. ET). The conference call will be broadcast live over the Internet via the Jack in the Box Inc. corporate website. To access the live call through the Internet, log onto the Investors section of the Jack in the Box Inc. website at http://investors.jackinthebox.com at least 15 minutes prior to the event in order to download and install any necessary audio software. A replay of the call will be available through the Jack in the Box Inc. corporate website for 21 days, beginning at approximately 11:30 a.m. PT on November 30, 2017.

    About Jack in the Box Inc.
    Jack in the Box Inc. (NASDAQ: JACK), based in San Diego, is a restaurant company that operates and franchises Jack in the Box®restaurants, one of the nation’s largest hamburger chains, with more than 2,200 restaurants in 21 states and Guam. Additionally, through a wholly owned subsidiary, the company operates and franchises QDOBA MEXICAN EATS®, a leader in fast-casual dining, with more than 700 restaurants in 47 states, the District of Columbia and Canada. For more information on Jack in the Box and QDOBA, including franchising opportunities, visit www.jackinthebox.com or www.qdoba.com.


Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. and Buffalo Wild Wings, Inc. Announce Definitive Merger Agreement

November 28, 2017 07:05 AM Eastern Standard Time


ATLANTA & MINNEAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. (“ARG”) and Buffalo Wild Wings, Inc. (Nasdaq: BWLD) (“BWW”) today announced that the companies have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which ARG will acquire BWLD for $157 per share in cash, in a transaction valued at approximately $2.9 billion, including BWW’s net debt. The agreement, which has been unanimously approved by both companies’ Boards of Directors, represents a premium of approximately 38% to BWW’s 30-day volume-weighted average stock price as of November 13, 2017, the latest trading day prior to news reports speculating about a potential transaction.

Statement by Paul Brown, Chief Executive Officer of Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc.
"Buffalo Wild Wings is one of the most distinctive and successful entertainment and casual dining restaurant companies in America,” said Paul Brown, CEO of Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. “We are excited to welcome a brand with such a rich heritage, led by an exceptionally talented team. We look forward to leveraging the combined strengths of both organizations into a truly differentiated and transformative multi-brand restaurant company.”

Statement by Sally Smith, Chief Executive Officer of Buffalo Wild Wings, Inc.
“We are excited about this merger and confident Arby’s represents an excellent partner for Buffalo Wild Wings,” said Sally Smith, CEO of Buffalo Wild Wings. “This transaction provides compelling value to our shareholders and is a testament to the hard work and efforts of our talented Team Members and franchisees. We are confident that the strength of our two industry-leading brands, under the sponsorship of Roark Capital – an experienced restaurant and food service investor – will enable us to capitalize on significant growth opportunities in the years ahead.”

Transaction Details
The transaction is not subject to a financing condition and is expected to close during the first quarter of 2018, subject to the approval of BWW shareholders and the satisfaction of customary closing conditions, including applicable regulatory approvals.
Following the close of the transaction, BWW will be a privately-held subsidiary of Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. and will continue to be operated as an independent brand. Paul Brown will serve as Chief Executive Officer of the parent company.

Arby’s is majority owned by affiliates of Roark Capital Group (Roark), an Atlanta based private equity firm that focuses on investing in franchised and multi-unit businesses in the restaurant, retail and other consumer sectors. Affiliates of Roark are committing all of the equity that, together with the proceeds of debt financing, will be necessary to complete the transaction.

Certain funds advised by Marcato Capital Management, LP, which own approximately 6.4% of the outstanding shares of BWW, have entered into an agreement to vote in favor of the transaction.

Advisors
Barclays is serving as financial advisor and White & Case LLP is serving as legal counsel to ARG. Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC is serving as financial advisor and Faegre Baker Daniels LLP is serving as legal counsel to BWW.

About Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc.
Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. is the parent company, owner-operator, and franchisor of the Arby’s brand. Arby’s, founded in 1964, is the second-largest sandwich restaurant brand in the world with more than 3,300 restaurants in seven countries. The company is majority owned by an affiliate of Roark Capital Group and is headquartered in Atlanta, Ga. For more information, visit Arbys.com

About Buffalo Wild Wings
Buffalo Wild Wings, Inc., founded in 1982 and headquartered in Minneapolis, is a growing owner, operator and franchisor of Buffalo Wild Wings® restaurants featuring a variety of boldly-flavored, made-to-order menu items including its namesake Buffalo, New York-style chicken wings. The Buffalo Wild Wings menu specializes in 21 mouth-watering signature sauces and seasonings with flavor sensations ranging from Sweet BBQ™ to Blazin’®. Guests enjoy a welcoming neighborhood atmosphere that includes an extensive multi-media system for watching their favorite sporting events. Buffalo Wild Wings is the recipient of hundreds of "Best Wings" and "Best Sports Bar" awards from across the country. There are currently more than 1,250 Buffalo Wild Wings locations in 10 countries. For more information, visit BuffaloWildWings.com

About Roark Capital Group
Roark focuses on investing in franchised and multi-unit businesses in the retail, restaurant, consumer and business services sectors. Since inception, affiliates of Roark have invested in 62 franchise/multi-unit brands, which collectively generate $27 billion in annual system revenues from 29,000 locations in 50 states and 78 countries. For more information, please visit www.roarkcapital.com


Cracker Barrel Reports Results For First Quarter Fiscal 2018, Comparable Store Sales Outperformed The Casual Dining Industry, Earnings Exceeded Expectations

Company reports first quarter positive comparable store restaurant sales and updates fiscal year guidance

Board declares quarterly dividend of $1.20 per share
NEWS PROVIDED BY
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. 

Nov 21, 2017, 08:00 ET

LEBANON, Tenn., Nov. 21, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. ("Cracker Barrel" or the "Company") (Nasdaq:  CBRL) today reported its financial results for the first quarter of fiscal 2018 ended October 27, 2017.

First Quarter Fiscal 2018 Highlights

  • Earnings per diluted share were $1.92 compared to diluted EPS of $2.01 in the prior year quarter. The Company estimates that hurricanes Harvey and Irma reduced first quarter diluted EPS by approximately $0.07 and will reduce second quarter diluted EPS by approximately $0.03.
  • Operating income margin was 10.0% of revenue, compared with prior year operating income margin of 10.7% of revenue.
  • Comparable restaurant sales of 0.2% and traffic of -1.8% outperformed the Casual Dining Industry, despite the negative impacts from hurricanes Harvey and Irma. (See comparable sales and traffic table for hurricane impact estimates.)
  • The Company's Board of Directors declared a quarterly dividend of $1.20 per share on the Company's common stock, payable on February 5, 2018 to shareholders of record on January 12, 2018.

Commenting on the first quarter and fiscal year outlook, Cracker Barrel President and Chief Executive Officer Sandra B. Cochran said, "We delivered positive comparable store restaurant sales in the first quarter, outperformed our casual dining peers, and exceeded our earnings expectations, despite the challenges presented by the impact of hurricanes Harvey and Irma on many of the communities in which we, our customers and our employees live and work. In addition, our field and leadership teams made significant progress on the introduction of several key business initiatives, including the system-wide rollout of our off-premise platform. While being more cautious in our industry outlook and in our expectations for continued wage and commodity pressure, we remain well-positioned to deliver top-line performance and earnings growth as a result of our fiscal 2018 initiatives."

First Quarter Fiscal 2018 Results 
Revenue 
The Company reported total revenue of $710.4 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2018, representing an increase of 0.1% over the first quarter of the prior year. Comparable store restaurant sales increased 0.2%, including a 2.0% increase in average check partially offset by a 1.8% decrease in store traffic. The average menu price increase for the quarter was approximately 2.2%. Comparable store retail sales decreased 3.6% from the prior year quarter. The Company opened two new Holler & Dash Biscuit House locations during the quarter, bringing the store count to 651 combined Cracker Barrel Old Country Store and Holler & Dash Biscuit House locations at quarter-end.

Comparable store restaurant traffic, average check and comparable store restaurant sales and retail sales for the fiscal months of August, September and October and the first quarter were as follows:

 

August

 

September

 

October

First Quarter(1)

Comparable restaurant traffic

-1.3%

-2.4%

-1.7%

-1.8%

Average check

1.9%

2.1%

1.9%

2.0%

Comparable restaurant sales

0.6%

-0.3%

0.2%

0.2%

Comparable retail sales

-1.4%

-3.1%

-5.6%

-3.6%

(1)

The Company estimates that effects of hurricanes Harvey and Irma reduced fiscal first quarter
traffic and restaurant sales by approximately 0.3% and retail sales by approximately 0.6%.

Operating Income
Operating income in the first quarter was $70.8 million, or 10.0% of total revenue. Operating income in the prior year quarter was 10.7% of total revenue. As a percentage of total revenue, increases in other store operating expenses and general and administrative expenses were partially offset by decreases in cost of goods sold and labor and related expenses.

Diluted Earnings per Share
Earnings per diluted share were $1.92, compared to diluted EPS of $2.01 in the prior year first quarter. The Company estimates that hurricanes Harvey and Irma reduced first quarter diluted EPS by approximately $0.07.

Fiscal 2018 Outlook
For fiscal 2018, the Company now expects to report earnings per diluted share of between $8.75 and $8.90 reflecting the approximately $0.10 negative impact from hurricanes Harvey and Irma. The Company expects total revenue of approximately $3.1 billion, reflecting the expected opening of eight or nine new Cracker Barrel stores and three new Holler & Dash stores, as well as projected increases in comparable store restaurant sales in the range of 2.0% to 3.0% and comparable store retail sales to be approximately flat. The Company now projects food commodity inflation in the range of 2.0% to 2.5% for the year. The Company now projects operating income margin to be approximately 10.5% of total revenue. The Company expects depreciation expense between $95 million and $100 million; net interest expense in the range of $15 million to $16 million; and capital expenditures of approximately $150 million to $160 million. The Company anticipates an effective tax rate for fiscal 2018 of between 31% and 32%.

The Company's 2018 fiscal year is a 53-week year. The Company estimates the impact of the 53rd week, which is included in its guidance, to contribute earnings per diluted share of approximately $0.30.

The Company expects to report earnings per diluted share for the second quarter of 2018 of between $2.15 and $2.25. The Company reminds investors that its outlook for fiscal 2018 reflects a number of assumptions, many of which are outside the Company's control.

Fiscal 2018 First Quarter Conference Call
As previously announced, the live broadcast of Cracker Barrel's quarterly conference call will be available to the public on-line at investor.crackerbarrel.com today beginning at 11:00 a.m. (ET). The on-line replay will be available at 2:00 p.m. (ET) and continue through December 6, 2017.

About Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc.
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. (Nasdaq: CBRL) shares warm welcomes and friendly service while offering guests high-quality homestyle food and unique shopping – all at a fair price. By creating a world filled with hospitality and charm through an experience that combines dining and shopping, guests are cared for like family. Established in 1969 in Lebanon, Tenn., Cracker Barrel and its affiliates operate 647 company-owned Cracker Barrel Old Country Store®locations in 44 states and own the fast-casual Holler and Dash® restaurants. For more information about the company, visit crackerbarrel.com.


iPic® Entertainment Enters Into Agreement with PVR Limited for Minority Stake

NEWS PROVIDED BY
iPic Entertainment 
Nov 20, 2017, 08:32 ET

BOCA RATON, Fla., Nov. 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- iPic®-Gold Class Entertainment Inc. ("iPic" or the "Company"), today announced PVR Limited (PVR), India's largest and the most premium film exhibition company, has agreed to acquire a minority stake in iPic®-Gold Class Entertainment Inc.

iPic® is America's premier luxury restaurant-and-theater company, which owns and operates 16 locations  with 121 screens and 10 restaurants across 10 states in the United States. iPic®'s facilities blend three distinct areas: a polished-casual restaurant, a farm-to-glass full-service bar, and world-class luxury theater auditoriums into a one-of-a-kind experience. The Company's multi-faceted guest experience of dining, drinking and watching a movie in a luxurious setting is supported and enhanced by ever changing Hollywood movies and other non-traditional content such as concerts and eGaming.

iPic® previously announced its intention to file a Regulation A+ initial public offering that will allow all of its loyal fans and theater goers, along with the general public, the opportunity to invest in its luxury restaurant-and-theater concept. iPic has agreed to appoint Mr. Ajay Bijli, Chairman and Managing Director of PVR Limited, to its Board of Directors upon completion of its initial public offering.

"We are very pleased to be gaining PVR as a talented and strategic partner during this exciting time for iPic as we work towards becoming a publicly traded company," said Hamid Hashemi CEO and Founder. "We welcome Mr. Bijli to our Board of Directors and believe his knowledge and experience will prove invaluable to iPic's growth and expansion in both new U.S. markets as well as overseas."

Individuals interested in learning more about the iPic® Entertainment Regulation A+ investment opportunity can register an indication of interest by visiting www.banq.co/listings/ipic.

About iPic®–Gold Class Entertainment, LLC
iPic® Entertainment is America's premier luxury restaurant-and-theater company. iPic currently operates 121 screens at 16 locations in 10 states in the United States, with an additional 5 locations under construction and a pipeline of additional sites in various stages of development.

iPic® was founded by Mr. Hamid Hashemi who is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the company. The key shareholders of iPic® include iPic Holdings, LLC, Village Roadshow (Australia's largest cinema exhibitor), Regal Cinemas (one of USA's largest cinema exhibition chain) and Retirement System of Alabama (a large state pension fund).

For more information, visit www.ipic.com.

About PVR Limited
PVR is India's largest and the most premium film exhibition company. Since its inception in 1997, the brand 'PVR' has redefined the way entertainment is consumed in the country. PVR currently operates a cinema circuit comprising 600 screens at 131 properties in 51 cities (18 states and 1 Union Territory), serving approx. 75 million patrons annually.


YO! Acquires Leading North American Sushi Brand Bento Sushi in CAN$100m Deal

in CAN$100m Deal
NEWS PROVIDED BY
YO! Sushi 
Nov 20, 2017, 08:00 ET
LONDON, November 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --

YO! Sushi ("YO!"), the iconic Japanese restaurant group, today announces the acquisition of Bento Sushi ("Bento"), North America's second largest sushi brand, creating a global multi-channel and multi brand sushi platform. The acquisition values Bento at CAN $100 million and has been facilitated by Mayfair Equity Partners, who partnered with the YO! management team as part of a management buyout in 2015.

Bento, founded in Toronto in 1996 by Ken Valvur, is the second largest sushi brand in North America, and the largest in Canada trading from over 600 locations, whilst supplying sushi to a further 1700 partner sites. Bento operates across a range of formats which complement YO!'s existing proposition. These include quick service restaurants, on-site kiosks in supermarkets and other food service locations, and a number of production facilities which supply sushi to grocery and institutional food service clients across North America. The business has achieved strong growth, delivering compound annual sales growth of 16% in the last three years. Bento and its licensees employ over 2000 highly trained sushi chefs and serve more than 20 million sushi portions every year. Bento's success has been driven by Ken Valvur and Glenn Brown, Bento's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer respectively, and as part of the deal they join the Board of YO! and become significant shareholders in the combined group.

With YO!'s international restaurant network across Europe, the Middle East and Australia, the combined business becomes one of the largest sushi companies outside Japan, providing an international, multi-brand, multi-channel offering, well placed to benefit from the continuing increase in consumer interest in healthy, provenance-rich foods. The acquisition will create synergies and enable the continued growth of both businesses, particularly in the US market. The combined businesses have recorded sales of approximately £175 million over the last twelve months.

The acquisition of Bento comes after two transformational years for YO!, in which Mayfair Equity Partners bought into the business and Robin Rowland returned to the role of CEO. Following a renewed focus on the brand, product, and people, including the appointment of several senior team hires, the business has seen like-for-like sales growth of +5% over the past 18 months. Eight new sites opened in the UK this year, as well as the Group's first sites in Manhattan, Parisand Sydney.

Robin Rowland, Chief Executive Officer of YO!, commented: "We've successfully reinvigorated the business over the last two years to ensure the foundations are in place for long term growth. This acquisition takes YO! into the next stage of its development, and creates the first global multi-channel Japanese food purveyor. Bento's proposition and its management team's strong track record make it the ideal partner for YO! as we look to further grow our brand."

Glenn Brown, Chief Executive Officer of Bento Sushi, stated: "This partnership presents Bento with an incredibleopportunity to grow its platform. YO! and Bento share a similar ethos and history, and we look forward to working with the YO! team and taking advantage of opportunities to develop both brands."

Ken Valvur, Chairman of Bento Sushi, added: "The combination of YO! and Bento will further enhance our group's ability to be the partner of choice for grocery and institutional food service providers throughout our enlarged operating geography, and creates exciting opportunities for our valued team members on both sides of the Atlantic."

Notes to Editors: 
YO! Sushi 
Founded in 1997, YO! Sushi was the first to bring to the UK the concept of a Japanese 'kaiten' sushi bar that delivered food via a conveyor belt. Today, YO! Sushi has 97 restaurants worldwide; 81 owned and 16 franchised, serving over 7 million customers a year. YO! Sushi sources all its fish from reputable suppliers who share the same concerns with regards to environmental issues and sustainability of at-risk species through over fishing and the subsequent depletion of certain fish, and all YO! Sushi dishes are freshly prepared in their restaurants every day. YO! Sushi was acquired by Mayfair Equity Partners in November 2015.

Bento Sushi 
Founded in 1996 in Toronto, Bento Sushi is Canada's largest sushi company and second largest in North America. With over 600 sushi bars and 6 Commissaries Bento Sushi continues to grow year-after-year based on the core values of being "the customer's choice for quick-service sushi based on excellence, trust, innovation and service". Bento Sushi is conveniently located in 'grab and go' kiosks and sushi bars in supermarkets, colleges and universities, shopping centres and corporate dining facilities across Canada and the United States. Bento Sushi cares about the environment and uses sustainably sourced seafood to prepare fresh and convenient products consumers can feel good about eating which translates to over 20 million servings of sushi sold annually.

Mayfair Equity Partners 
Mayfair Equity Partners is a buyout and growth capital investor providing capital to dynamic businesses in the Consumer and TMT sectors. Its primary focus is on building strong partnerships with exceptional management teams. Mayfair is an investor in Ovo Energy, one of the UK's leading independent domestic energy brands, YO! Sushi, the UK's leading fast-casual restaurant operator focusing on Japanese cuisine, Fox International, European's leading independent fishing brand, Tour Partner Group, a leading inbound tour operator for group tours and individual travellers to the UK, Ireland and the Nordics, Talon Outdoor, the UK's only fully independent Out of Home specialist media agency, SuperAwesome, the technology company which powers the kids' digital media ecosystem, and Promise Gluten Free, a highly innovative bakery which entered the gluten free market in 2012.

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