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Financials - June 2021












Cheesecake Factory Buys Most of Roark’s Stake for $457M

Roark managing partner Neal Aronson will retain control of a 4.6% stake. The buyback more than doubled Roark's initial investment.

By Peter Romeo on Jun. 14, 2021

The Cheesecake Factory is reacquiring most of the equity stake held by Buffalo Wild Wings parent Roark Capital in a transaction valued at $457.3 million.

If the series of financial moves are completed as expected on June 15, Roark’s interest in Cheesecake will be reduced to 2.4 million shares of common stock, or 4.6% of total shares outstanding. The stake will be controlled by Roark founder and managing partner Neal Aronson, according to securities documents filed Monday.

The moves largely undo Roark’s $200 million equity investment in Cheesecake back in April 2020, when the pandemic was just beginning. Not knowing what to expect during the impending crisis, most restaurant companies scrambled to maximize their liquidity, fearful they’d have insufficient cash on hand to sustain operations as dining rooms were ordered to close and sales fell to a trickle.

Cheesecake opted to trade 200,000 shares of preferred stock to Roark for $200 million. The deal shocked an industry already stunned by the unprecedented market changes they were seeing as coronavirus shut down much of the nation. Roark owns a huge stable of franchised restaurant brands through its two main holdings, Focus Brands and Inspire Brands. Most compete in the quick-service sector, far downmarket from Cheesecake’s turf.

Cheesecake only franchises abroad, and on a limited basis, and it is positioned squarely in the upper echelon of casual dining.

In the multi-step deal spelled out in Monday’s SEC filings, Roark will distribute 150,000 of its 200,000 preferred Cheesecake shares to three subsidiaries. Cheesecake will then repurchase the stock for $446.9 million.

The remaining 50,000 preferred Cheesecake shares will be converted to 2,448,381 common shares of the casual-dining company. Aronson will “surrender” 47,517 of the common shares to Cheesecake in exchange for $10.4 million in cash.

That step will leave him with 2.4 million shares. The securities filing states that Aronson will have the discretion to manage the shares as he sees fit.

The transaction will apparently not cost Paul Ginsberg, Roark Capital’s president, his seat on Cheesecake’s board.

The deal specifies that Ginsberg and Aronson are “locked up” for 60 days from trying to amass a controlling interest in Cheesecake.

Roark is now one of the largest holding companies in foodservice, with brands ranging from Auntie Anne’s to Sonic, Jimmy John’s, Arby’s, Moe’s Southwest Grill, Schlotzsky’s, Carvel, 50% of Culver’s, Miller’s Ale House and Rusty Taco.

Cheesecake operates its namesake brand and a high-volume Italian casual concept called North Italia. Through its ownership of Fox Restaurant Group, a concept incubator, it also holds the rights to develop Flower Child, Culinary Dropout, Fly Bye and a host of other small brands.

View source version at Cheesecake Factory


Nathan's Famous, Inc. Reports Year End and Fourth Quarter Results

And Declares Quarterly Cash Dividend Of $0.35 Per Share

June 11, 2021 08:30 ET



JERICHO, N.Y., June 11, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Nathan's Famous, Inc. (NASDAQ:NATH) today reported results for its fiscal year and fourth quarter ended March 28, 2021.

Effective June 11, 2021, the Board of Directors declared its first quarterly cash dividend for fiscal 2022 of $0.35 per share, which is payable on June 25, 2021 to shareholders of record at the close of business on June 21, 2021.

For the fiscal year ended March 28, 2021:

  1. Revenues were $75,839,000 for the fifty-two weeks ended March 28, 2021 (“fiscal 2021”), as compared to $103,325,000 for the fifty-two weeks ended March 29, 2020 (“fiscal 2020”);

  2. Income from operations was $25,515,000 for fiscal 2021, as compared to $27,172,000 for fiscal 2020;

  3. Adjusted EBITDA1 for fiscal 2021, a non-GAAP financial measure, was $27,225,000, as compared to $29,964,000 for fiscal 2020;

  4. Income before provision for income taxes was $15,325,000 for fiscal 2021, as compared to $18,014,000 for fiscal 2020;

  5. Net income was $11,075,000 for fiscal 2021, as compared to $13,435,000 for fiscal 2020; and

  6. Earnings per diluted share was $2.69 per share for fiscal 2021, as compared to $3.19 per share for fiscal 2020.

For the thirteen weeks ended March 28, 2021:

  1. Revenues were $18,284,000 for the thirteen weeks ended March 28, 2021 (“fourth quarter fiscal 2021”), as compared to $21,705,000 for the thirteen weeks ended March 29, 2020 (“fourth quarter fiscal 2020”);

  2. Income from operations was $5,434,000 for the fourth quarter fiscal 2021, as compared to $6,495,000 for the fourth quarter fiscal 2020;

  3. Adjusted EBITDA1 for the fourth quarter fiscal 2021, a non-GAAP financial measure, was $5,817,000, as compared to $7,124,000 for the fourth quarter fiscal 2020;

  4. Income before provision for income taxes was $2,855,000 for the fourth quarter fiscal 2021, as compared to $4,153,000 for the fourth quarter fiscal 2020;

  5. Net income was $2,061,000 for the fourth quarter fiscal 2021, as compared to $3,195,000 for the fourth quarter fiscal 2020; and

  6. Earnings per diluted share was $0.50 per share for the fourth quarter fiscal 2021, as compared to $0.76 per share for the fourth quarter fiscal 2020.

_______________ 1 EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA are non-GAAP financial measures. Please see the definitions of EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA on page 3 of this release and the reconciliation of EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA to net income in the table at the end of this release.

View full version at Nathan's Famous


Mercato Partners Closes $100 Million Savory Fund II


June 02, 2021 07:14 AM Eastern Daylight Time


SALT LAKE CITY--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Mercato Partners today announced the final closing of Savory Fund II, its second investment vehicle devoted exclusively to backing emerging and profitable restaurant concepts, raising $100 million of commitments. The closing of Fund II builds upon the early success of the firm’s inaugural vehicle, which closed on $100 million of commitments in October 2020.

Limited partners in the fund consist of both existing and new investors, including institutional investors, family offices, and financial services and advisory firms. Seventy-two percent of investors in Fund I have committed to Fund II and will enjoy co-investment rights on a deal-by-deal basis.

Savory’s investment strategy focuses on partnering with proven, profitable food and beverage brands looking to expand beyond their founding region and build a culture of operational excellence. The fund is managed by General Partners Andrew K. Smith and Greg Warnock, along with an experienced F&B team of 65 professionals responsible for scaling Savory’s brands from 3-9 locations up to 40-50 locations nationwide.

Fund II will seek to partner with 6-7 new brands during its investment period. Since the inception of the Savory Fund Practice in 2018, the firm has deployed $65 million and allocated an additional $15 million of growth capital into five distinctive, emerging restaurant concepts – The Crack ShackMo’BettahsR&R BarbequeSwig, and Via 313. Currently the firm is on pace to open over 40 locations across the portfolio in 2021, with 70 openings targeted for 2022.

“We are grateful for the continued support of our investors, especially after closing Fund I less than one year ago,” said Smith. “As one of the few firms operating in this industry niche, they understand our mission of partnering with leading entrepreneurs early in their business’ life cycles and accelerating their brand and operations nationally. The last year has shown that skilled, active managers can provide true alpha to investment portfolios beyond market rate returns. Striving for outperformance will always be a feature of Savory’s DNA.”

“Through the deployment of Fund I, we have developed a replicable playbook for success with five amazing companies, not only through the efficient use of capital, but also through on-the-ground operational assistance. We managed to do this despite operating during the most challenging time in the industry’s history. We are grateful for the perseverance of our founders and our loyal employees,” Smith continued.

“As the pandemic fades into memory, Savory is poised to take advantage of re-openings across the country, and the desire to eat outside the home and try new concepts. We are also deploying Fund II during a transition period in the commercial real estate market. Many sites have become available due to the effects of the pandemic, allowing Savory’s portfolio companies to secure new space in desirable locations. We expect this to continue during the life of Fund II,” Smith concluded.

“Swig partnered with Savory in December of 2017, and since then, our brand has experienced explosive revenue growth, approaching 300% from when we partnered,” said Chase Wardrop, President of Swig. “We have also been fortunate to open 13 additional stores as a partnership, with 17 more slated to open in 2021. Over the last few years, the Savory team has been instrumental in guiding us through the growth process, implementing their playbook on technologies, personnel and strategy necessary for our brand to scale. As a result, our teams have been able to adapt, and we were extremely well positioned during the unexpected challenges our industry faced during the pandemic. Swig is now poised for additional mind-bending growth in the coming years. Because we have the Savory team behind us, we feel prepared to execute better than ever.”

Cooley LLP provided legal counsel for the formation of Fund II.

About Savory Funds

The Savory Funds, managed by Mercato Partners, focus on delivering outsized returns through strategic investments in the food and beverage industry. Savory partners with high-potential, profitable, emerging restaurant brands, to deliver financial capital, industry expertise, revenue opportunities, profitability enhancements, and new location development. The Savory team contributes directly to all aspects of growth and replication by using a proven playbook and methodology. Founder involvement in the expansion of a brand is a central theme of the Savory approach, as founders carry the tribal knowledge around the uniqueness that has energized early success and is essential to future growth. For more Information, visit savory.mercatopartners.com.

About Mercato Partners

Founded in 2007, Mercato Partners provides capital and guidance to firms in periods of high growth. Focusing on under-served markets, the firm structures majority, minority, and secondary positions in market leaders with demonstrated high organic growth rates. Known as a value-add investor, Mercato works with its in-house performance team and an extended network of advisors and service providers to accelerate growth. Across four distinct practices and $1B AUM, the firm actively invests in technology, branded consumer, and food and beverage companies helping them accelerate sales, market successfully and build and enable winning teams. For more information, please visit www.mercatopartners.com

View source version at Savory Fund


Krispy Kreme Files its $100M IPO

The doughnut chain, which also owns Insomnia Cookies, says it will use the funds to pay down debt.

By Jonathan Maze on Jun. 01, 2021

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts has filed documents for a $100 million initial public offering on Tuesday, hoping that its strong revenue growth and shifted plans for sales at retail shops can win over investors that have had few bites at new restaurant stocks in recent years.

The Winston Salem, N.C.-based chain plans to use the funds to pay off a 2019 credit facility. The company has $1.2 billion in debt and interest on that debt has largely kept the company from turning a profit despite consistently increasing revenues.

Krispy Kreme, which will trade on the Nasdaq stock exchange under the ticker symbol DNUT, reported a loss of $3 million in the quarter ended April 4, though that was improved from an $11.5 million loss in the same period a year ago. The company generated $321.8 million in revenue, up 23% from a year ago.

Krispy Kreme had been a public company until it was taken private by the European investment firm JAB Holdings in 2016.

In the years since then it has grown revenue by an average of 19% a year. The company in 2018 acquired the cookie delivery concept Insomnia Cookies—which currently operates 191 locations.

Krispy Kreme has also shifted its retail strategy to what it calls “delivered fresh daily” at places like convenience stores and grocers, opting to leave unprofitable locations and select  places where it can provide fresher doughnuts. It also created a “branded sweet treats” line for retailers.

The number of Krispy Kreme locations has also grown, to 1,515 globally last year from 1,409 at the end of 2018, according to federal securities filings. It sells products in an additional 7,371 “delivered fresh daily” locations around the world.

J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, BofA Securities and Citigroup are the lead book-running managers from Krispy Kreme’s proposed offering. BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank Securities, Evercore ISI, Goldman Sachs & Co, HSBC, Truist Securities and Wells Fargo Securitiesa re joint book-running managers.

Capital One Securities, C.L. King & Associates, Credit Agricole CIB, Mischler Financial Group, MUFG, Ramirez & Co., Santander Investment Securities and Siebert Williams Shank are co-managers.

View source version at Krispy Kreme


Delight Restaurant Group Announces Acquisition of 44 Wendy’s Restaurants From the Wendy’s Company

May 27, 2021

Long Island, NY  (RestaurantNews.com)  Delight Restaurant Group has announced the acquisition of 44 Wendy’s® restaurants on Long Island, New York. As part of the transaction, Delight Restaurant Group plans to build several new Wendy’s restaurants in the area and remodel certain acquired restaurants under the brand’s Image Activation initiative.


The 44 restaurants employ more than 1,200 team members. The Wendy’s restaurants were previously owned and operated by The Wendy’s Company.

Delight Restaurant Group is a high performing and growth-oriented restaurant franchisee founded by Managing Partners Andrew and Richard Krumholz in 2016. Delight Restaurant Group is one of the Restaurant Finance Monitor’s Top 200 Largest Franchisees in the United States with total revenue of $290+ million and 155 Wendy’s and Taco Bell restaurants. This is Delight Restaurant Group’s second acquisition this year after acquiring 54 Wendy’s in North Carolina as part of the NPC bankruptcy sale process. Delight Restaurant Group plans to continue expanding through acquisitions and new unit development.

Andrew Krumholz, Managing Partner of Delight Restaurant Group said, “We are excited to continue and build on the strong performance of the Wendy’s restaurants in the Long Island market. We have an amazing team in place and look forward to making a positive difference in our communities.” Richard Krumholz, Managing Partner of Delight Restaurant Group said, “We are thrilled to grow with this exceptional portfolio and couldn’t be more excited about the future of the Wendy’s brand.”

About Delight Restaurant Group

Delight Restaurant Group is a high performing and growth-oriented franchisee of Wendy’s and Taco Bell restaurants with a total of 155 locations, over 4,000 employees, and $290+ million in gross annual revenue. The company was founded in 2016 by Managing Partners Andrew and Richard Krumholz.

View source version at Delight Restaurant Group


Cracker Barrel Reports Third Quarter Fiscal 2021 Results

Declares Quarterly Dividend

Delivers Sequential Improvement in Operating Income Margin Compared to Fiscal 2021 Second Quarter



May 25, 2021, 08:00 ET



LEBANON, Tenn., May 25, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. ("Cracker Barrel" or the "Company") (Nasdaq: CBRL) today reported its financial results for the third quarter of fiscal 2021 ended April 30, 2021.

Third Quarter Fiscal 2021 Highlights

  1. The Company continued its sales recovery during the third quarter with both restaurant and retail comparable store sales improvements compared to the second quarter. Driven by the reopening of dining rooms and strategic sales initiatives, the Company further rebuilt its sales volumes.

  2. Versus the third quarter of fiscal 20191, comparable store restaurant sales decreased 8.6% and comparable store retail sales increased 10.8%.

  3. Comparable store off-premise sales grew 144.0% compared to the third quarter of 20191 and represented approximately 23% of restaurant sales.

  4. GAAP operating income in the third quarter was $52.5 million, or 7.4% of total revenue, and adjusted2 operating income was $55.7 million, or 7.8% of total revenue.

  5. GAAP net income was $33.5 million, or 4.7% of total revenue. EBITDA was $82.8 million, or 11.6% of total revenue; this represented an 84% sequential improvement compared to fiscal 2021 second quarter EBITDA of $45.0 million.

  6. GAAP earnings per diluted share were $1.41, and adjusted2 earnings per diluted share were $1.51.

  7. The Company's Board of Directors declared a quarterly dividend of $1.00 per share on the Company's common stock payable on August 6, 2021 to shareholders of record on July 16, 2021.

Commenting on the third quarter results, Cracker Barrel President and Chief Executive Officer Sandra B. Cochran said, "The pace of our sales and margin recovery in the quarter exceeded expectations as we welcomed guests back into our dining rooms and our off-premise business remained strong. I'm pleased with the way our teams continue to deliver on our mission of Pleasing People as they care for guests and care for one another. As the ongoing recovery from the pandemic brings us closer to 2019 sales levels, I am confident our solid execution, unique brand, and the strategic initiatives implemented during the pandemic will support growth in long-term shareholder value."

Third Quarter Fiscal 2021 Results Revenue The Company reported total revenue of $713.4 million for the third quarter of fiscal 2021, representing an increase of 64.9% compared to the third quarter of the prior year, and a decrease of 3.5% compared to the third quarter of 2019. With the easing of dining room capacity restrictions, average weekly sales volumes increased significantly, driven by improvements in dine-in traffic, retained off-premise volumes, and strong retail performance. Cracker Barrel average per-store restaurant sales volumes grew from approximately $55,500 per fiscal week in fiscal January to approximately $70,000 per fiscal week in April.

View full version at Cracker Barrel


Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Inc. Reports Results for the Fiscal First Quarter Ended April 18, 2021


Company announces all Company-owned indoor dining rooms open with varying levels of capacity, 10.0% comparable revenue growth, improved first quarter trends


May 25, 2021 04:05 PM Eastern Daylight Time


GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Inc. (NASDAQ: RRGB) ("Red Robin" or the "Company"), a full-service restaurant chain serving an innovative selection of high-quality gourmet burgers in a family-friendly atmosphere, today reported financial results for the quarter ended April 18, 2021.

Key Highlights

  1. As of the end of our fiscal fifth period, all Company-owned restaurants have re-opened indoor dining rooms with varying levels of capacity;

  2. Restaurant revenue of $318.7 million and Restaurant Level Operating Profit (a non-GAAP metric) of 15.7%, an increase of 690 basis points over the same period in 2020;

  3. First quarter 2021 comparable(1) restaurant revenue increased 10.0% over the same period in 2020, and decreased 12.8% compared to the same period in 2019;

  4. At the end of the first quarter 2021, 55% of Company-owned restaurants had positive comparable(1) restaurant revenue compared to 2019;

  5. First quarter 2021 off-premises sales increased 75.5% compared to the period ended April 19, 2020, and comprised 41.7%, 26.3%, and 11.6% of total food and beverage sales for the first fiscal quarter of 2021, 2020, and 2019; and,

  6. For the last four weeks of the fiscal first quarter of 2021, 85 comparable(1) Company-owned restaurants with no capacity or social distancing restrictions realized comparable restaurant revenue of 5.2% over the same period in 2019, while maintaining off-premises mix of 29.9%, more than double pre-pandemic levels. These restaurants also realized comparable(1) restaurant margin of 21.1%, an increase of 1.5% over the same period in 2019. While these restaurants are able to operate with no restrictions, several are still operating below 100% capacity due to limited operating hours due to staffing challenges and COVID exclusions.

Paul J. B. Murphy III, Red Robin’s President and Chief Executive Officer, said, "We are very excited to share the progress we have made towards recovery. Our initiatives to enhance the Red Robin Guest experience and enterprise business model since the onset of the pandemic, coupled with decreasing COVID cases and pent-up demand, have resulted in a meaningful improvement in our liquidity and enterprise margins. We are encouraged that by the end of our first fiscal quarter, more than half of our Company-owned restaurants had positive comparable restaurant revenue compared to 2019, despite pronounced capacity restrictions in our largest markets. For the first time since the beginning of the pandemic, all of our Company-owned restaurants are open for indoor dining at varying levels of capacity. As we welcome back our Guests, we are sustaining off-premises sales that are more than double pre-pandemic levels, even in comparable Company-owned restaurants we are able to operate at full indoor capacity."

Murphy continued, "We believe the foundation that we have put in place will drive Guest activation, deliver a great brand experience, continue to generate incremental off-premises sales, and leverage our strengthened business model, together creating long-term value for our shareholders."

View full version at Red Robin



BurgerFi Reports First Quarter 2021 Results

May 19, 2021 17:00 ET



- Total Revenue Increased 32% Year-Over-Year in the First Quarter, Same Store Sales Up 11% in Corporate Owned Restaurants and Systemwide Sales Up 19% -

- Digital Channel Sales Increase 98% Year-Over-Year in the First Quarter -

- Company to Hold Conference Call Tomorrow, May 20th, at 8:30 a.m. ET -

PALM BEACH, Fla., May 19, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- BurgerFi International Inc. (Nasdaq: BFI, BFIIW), one of the nation’s fastest-growing premium fast-casual concepts, Fast Casuals’ #1 Brand of the year for 2021 in the Top 100 Movers and Shakers list and USA Today’s 10Best Readers’ Choice for 2021, is reporting financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2021.

First Quarter 2021 Key Metrics1 Summary(in thousands, except for percentage data)Three Months Ended March 31, 2021Systemwide Restaurant Sales$39,820Systemwide Restaurant Sales YOY Growth19%Systemwide Restaurant Same Store Sales YOY Growth4%Corporate Restaurant Sales$8,143Corporate Restaurant Sales YOY Growth41%Corporate Restaurant Same Store Sales YOY Growth11%Digital Channel Systemwide Sales$13,014Digital Channel Sales YOY Growth98%Digital Channel Orders 519Digital Channel Orders % of Systemwide Sales33%

1 Refer to “Key Metrics Definitions” and “About Non-GAAP Financial Measures” sections below.

Management Commentary “The first quarter of 2021 reflected our return to positive sales growth, achieved through unit growth and same store sales growth in both corporate owned restaurants and franchised locations,” said Julio Ramirez, CEO of BurgerFi. “Our success demonstrates the continued momentum from the COVID-19 pandemic recovery, supported by growth in our number of locations, strong results from our digital channel, the execution of our marketing strategy and successful limited time offerings. As a continuation of the investments in our digital channel, we also recently announced that we have hired Karl Goodhew as chief technology officer, a new position at our company that reflects the increasingly important role that technology is playing in our business. Additionally, we continue to redefine our brand and value proposition, and I’m pleased to say we have hired Henry Gonzalez as chief marketing officer. With his extensive leadership experience in field and corporate marketing, he is uniquely qualified to collaborate with all stakeholders to help us unlock our brand’s potential and drive growth.

“For 2021, we will continue to execute on our restaurant development plan in both new and existing markets with plans to open approximately 30 restaurants this year. We opened four new restaurants in the first quarter, one in April and currently have 21 restaurants in various stages of development and plan to expand our Ghost Kitchens through our partnerships with Reef and Epic Kitchens through opening 15-20 additional locations by the end of 2021. We are looking forward to bringing the ‘better burger’ experience to more consumers nationwide and internationally as we continue to build our brand. With our ongoing brand recognition efforts, we remain committed to innovating our menu items with unique offerings, like our Swag Burger and Dunkaroo Shake, to drive further excitement with consumers. We are optimistic about our expansion efforts on the eastern seaboard and internationally, and we anticipate that our growing presence will deliver strong results.”

Commenting on the results, Ophir Sternberg, Executive Chairman of BurgerFi, stated: “BurgerFi started the year strong receiving multiple awards, including being named a top fast casual restaurant by USA Today’s 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards. An increasing number of people continue to be introduced to our best-in-class menu and we look forward to the continued expansion of the brand in 2021 through new restaurant openings. I am also excited that we have topped off our c-suite with our recent appointments of our chief financial, chief technology and chief marketing officers. With the great talent we have in place, we are well positioned for 2021 and beyond.”

View full version at BurgerFi



BBQ Holdings, Inc. Reports Results for First Quarter 2021

Updates Revenue and Earnings Guidance for 2021

May 19, 2021 16:21 ET



MINNEAPOLIS, May 19, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- BBQ Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: BBQ) (the “Company”), an innovating global owner and operator of restaurants, today reported financial results for the first fiscal quarter ended April 4, 2021.

First Quarter 2021 Highlights:

  1. Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, was $3.1mm which includes $0.4mm of COVID-related expenses vs a loss of $.4mm Q1 last year.

  2. Net income of $799,000.

  3. Company-owned Famous Dave’s 2021 first quarter same store net sales increased 17.7% compared to 2020.

  4. Franchise-operated Famous Dave’s SSS increased 16.0% in the first quarter 2021 compared to 2020.

  5. Granite City first quarter same store net sales increased 3.0% compared to first quarter 2020.

  6. Restaurant level margins of 9.1% vs -1.9% last year.

  7. Famous Dave’s franchisee to open its first line-service model restaurant in Coon Rapids, Minnesota with an expected opening date of September 2021.

  8. Famous Dave’s franchisee to open its first drive-thru prototype restaurant in Salt Lake City, Utah with an expected opening date of July 2021.

Based on the results to date through the first quarter 2021, and including the uncertainty related to COVID-19, the Company has updated its 2021 guidance as follows:

  1. Net Revenue from $150 - $155 mm to $155 - $160 mm

  2. Net Income from $1.7 - $2.1 mm to $2.8 – $3.2 mm

  3. Cash EBITDA from $8.5 - $9.0 mm to $10.0 - $10.5 mm

Sales highlights for the four months of 2021 compared to the same period 2020 are as follows:

  1. Comparable sales for Famous Dave’s decreased 3.2% in January, decreased 2.9% in February, increased 60.6% in March, and increased 54.3% in April.

  2. Comparable sales for Granite City decreased 29.0% in January, decreased 26.3% in February, increased 117.4% in March, and increased 371.2% in April.

Sales highlights for the four months of 2021 compared to the same period 2019 are as follows:

  1. Comparable sales for Famous Dave’s increased 1.9% in January, decreased 1.2% in February, increased 9.5% in March, and increased 9.5% in April. 

  2. Comparable sales for Granite City decreased 33.1% in January, decreased 28.4% in February, decreased 16.9% in March, and decreased 19.6% in April.

Executive Comments

Jeff Crivello, CEO, commented, “While we still operate under certain state capacity and distancing restrictions throughout the country, we were pleased to see those restriction begin to ease in mid-late January as business began to return to a more normal environment. This has been especially helpful to Granite City as a brand that relies on dine-in customers and we have seen their sales quickly move closer to 2019 levels. Famous Dave’s continues to accelerate its overall sales as it has through the pandemic with its strong to-go business.

We are excited to move into a new growth phase as construction has begun on two new prototypes, a cafeteria style line-serve, and a counter-serve drive thru. We currently have 15 new ghost kitchens, and 5 brick and mortar Famous Dave’s in the pipeline to open this year.   Our M&A opportunities are robust.

View full version at BBQ Holdings


Ark Restaurants Announces Financial Results for the Second Quarter of 2021

May, 18 2021


Ark Restaurants Corp. (NASDAQ:ARKR) yesterday reported financial results for the second quarter ended April 3, 2021.

Financial Results

Total revenues for the 13 weeks ended April 3, 2021 were $25,767,000 versus $34,002,000 for the 13 weeks ended March 28, 2020. The 13 weeks ended April 3, 2021 includes revenues of $1,962,000 related to Blue Moon Fish Company, which was acquired on December 1, 2020 (see below). The 13 weeks ended March 28, 2020 includes revenues of $1,361,000 related to Thunder Grill in Washington, D.C., which was closed March 20, 2020 and Gallagher's Steakhouse and Gallagher's Burger Bar in Atlantic City, NJ, which was closed on January 2, 2021 (see below).

Total revenues for the 26 weeks ended April 3, 2021 were $46,066,000 versus $77,516,000 for the 26 weeks ended March 28, 2020. The 26 weeks ended April 3, 2021 includes revenues of $2,441,000 related to Blue Moon Fish Company, which was acquired on December 1, 2020. The 26 weeks ended March 28, 2020 includes revenues of $2,934,000 related to Thunder Grill in Washington, D.C., which was closed March 20, 2020 and Gallagher's Steakhouse and Gallagher's Burger Bar in Atlantic City, NJ, which was closed on January 2, 2021.

A comparison of company-wide same store sales is not meaningful as they are not comparable to prior periods as a result of the continually changing government mandated closures, capacity restrictions and social distancing guidelines required since March 2020 at all of our restaurants in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Company’s EBITDA, which includes a gain on the forgiveness of Paycheck Protection Program Loans and related accrued interest in the aggregate amount of $4,124,000 (the "PPP Loan Forgiveness"), for the 13 weeks ended April 3, 2021 was $3,648,000 versus $(924,000) for the 13-week period ended March 28, 2020. The Company’s EBITDA, adjusted for the PPP Loan Forgiveness and other items as set out below, for the 13 weeks ended April 3, 2021 was $(495,000) versus $(531,000) for the 13-week period ended March 28, 2020. Net income, which includes the PPP Loan Forgiveness, for the 13-weeks ended April 3, 2021 was $4,161,000 or $1.19 per basic ($1.15 per diluted share), compared to a net loss of $(1,778,000) or $(0.51) per basic and diluted share, for the 13-week period ended March 28, 2020.

The Company’s EBITDA, which includes the PPP Loan Forgiveness, for the 26 weeks ended April 3, 2021 was $1,284,000 versus $2,708,000 for the 26-week period ended March 28, 2020. The Company’s EBITDA, adjusted for the PPP Loan Forgiveness and other items as set out below, for the 26 weeks ended April 3, 2021 was $(2,864,000) versus $2,955,000 for the 26-week period ended March 28, 2020. Net income, which includes the PPP Loan Forgiveness, for the 26-weeks ended April 3, 2021 was $3,398,000 or $0.97 per basic ($0.95 per diluted share), compared to a net loss of $(265,000) or $(0.08) per basic and diluted share, for the 13-week period ended March 28, 2020.

View full version at Ark Restaurants


J. Alexander's Holdings, Inc. Reports Results for First Quarter Ended April 4, 2021

May, 18 2021

Sales in March and April 2021 Approach Pre-pandemic Levels


J. Alexander’s Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: JAX), owner and operator of J. Alexander’s, Redlands Grill, Stoney River Steakhouse and Grill and other restaurants, today provided a business update and reported results for the first quarter ended April 4, 2021.

Mark A. Parkey, Chief Executive Officer of the Company, stated, “I’m excited to announce that even with restaurant capacity restrictions in many markets our sales in March 2021 reached nearly 100% of sales for March 2019 and were over 155% of sales in March 2020 when the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic occurred. Further, for April 2021, sales were over 105% of the comparable period for 2019. We’re optimistic that we will continue to build on the tremendous momentum we’ve experienced in the first few months of 2021 throughout the remainder of the year and are anxiously awaiting the day when each of our locations will once again be operating at full capacity.”

First Quarter 2021 Highlights Compared To The First Quarter Of 2020

  1. Cash flow from operations for the first quarter of 2021 was $4,809,000 as compared to cash flow from operations in the first quarter of 2020 of $1,830,000.

  2. Average weekly same store sales per restaurant (1) for the first quarter of 2021 were up 3.1% to $106,600 for the J. Alexander’s/Grill restaurants and up 4.0% to $75,300 for the Stoney River Steakhouse and Grill restaurants compared to the first quarter of 2020.

  3. Net sales for the first quarter of 2021 were $57,375,000, up from $56,972,000 reported in the first quarter of 2020. Several factors impacted the comparability of net sales between these two quarters as follows:

  4. Because our fiscal calendar ends on the Sunday closest to December 31st, fiscal 2020 contained 53 weeks, which included two New Year’s Eve holidays with one being in the first quarter and the other falling in the fourth quarter of 2020. As such, fiscal 2020’s first quarter contains the benefit of a New Year’s Eve holiday, traditionally one of the Company’s strongest sales weeks of the year, while the first quarter of fiscal 2021 does not include the benefit of that holiday. Management estimates that net sales in the first quarter of 2021 would have been approximately $650,000 higher if it had included the benefit of the New Year’s Eve week.

  5. During February 2021, beginning on Valentine’s Day and lasting throughout the week that followed, the country experienced severe winter weather which resulted in the Company’s restaurants being closed for 54 days across several markets. Management estimates that the impact of these winter storms cost us approximately $500,000 in lost net sales for the first quarter of 2021.

  6. In mid-March 2020 at the onset of novel coronavirus (“COVID-19”) pandemic, the Company was forced to close its restaurants for dine-in service due to governmental restrictions and shifted its business platform entirely to a carry-out model. The last two weeks of the first quarter of fiscal 2020 were severely impacted, with sales levels of approximately 15% of the prior year sales. The first quarter of 2021 continued to be impacted by government-imposed capacity restrictions at varying levels throughout the quarter as well, ending the quarter at approximately 75% capacity company-wide.

  7. Income from continuing operations before income taxes totaled $3,162,000 for the first quarter of 2021. This compares to a loss from continuing operations before income taxes of $18,979,000 in the first quarter of 2020, which included a goodwill impairment charge of $15,737,000, a fixed asset impairment charge associated with the closure of one restaurant of $689,000, approximately $2,050,000 in charges related to continuing benefits and emergency sick leave pay for furloughed team members, and the impact of transaction expenses of $689,000. The first quarter of 2021 was not impacted by impairment charges and included only approximately $80,000 of expense related to emergency and other sick leave benefits and $46,000 of transaction expenses related to the ongoing evaluation of strategic alternatives. The first quarter of 2021 did include $445,000 of pre-opening expenses related to the opening of one restaurant as compared to pre-opening expenses of only $19,000 in the first quarter of 2020.

  8. Results for the first quarter of 2021 included income tax expense of $367,000 compared to an income tax benefit of $1,387,000 in the first quarter of 2020.

  9. Net income for the first quarter of 2021 totaled $3,390,000 compared to a net loss of $17,644,000 in the first quarter of 2020.

  10. Basic and diluted earnings per share were $0.23 for the first quarter of 2021 compared to basic and diluted loss per share of $1.20 for the first quarter of 2020.

  11. Adjusted EBITDA (2) was $7,192,000 in the first quarter of 2021 compared to $1,964,000 in the first quarter of 2020.

  12. Restaurant Operating Profit Margin (3) was 15.7% in the first quarter of 2021 compared to 5.3% for the first quarter of 2020.

  13. Food and beverage costs as a percentage of net sales in the first quarter of 2021 were 29.8% compared to 32.6% in the first quarter of 2020.

As previously disclosed, the Company has been experiencing positive trends in its sales recovery during 2021. Net sales in January, February and March 2021 reached approximately 75%, 85% and 155%, respectively, of sales experienced in the comparable periods of 2020. For the full first quarter of 2021, net sales were nearly 90% of 2019’s first quarter sales and were just over 100% of 2020’s first quarter sales. Off-premise sales continued to represent a meaningful portion of the Company’s business during the first quarter of 2021 as well, comprising approximately 16% of total net sales for the quarter, which represents approximately $720,000 on average weekly off-premise sales. Sales results for the first quarter of 2021 were aided by a price increase and packaging fee on carry-out orders both implemented in the second half of 2020.

View full version at J. Alexander's



Roark Capital Acquires Nothing Bundt Cakes


May 14, 2021 01:08 PM Eastern Daylight Time


ATLANTA & DALLAS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Roark Capital, an Atlanta-based private equity firm focused on investing in franchised and multi-location businesses, announced today that its affiliate has acquired Nothing Bundt Cakes.

Founded in 1997, Nothing Bundt Cakes is a market leading franchisor and operator of gourmet bakeries offering specialty bundt cakes in 390 locations that generate ~$470 million of system sales across the U.S. and Canada. Nothing Bundt Cakes’ products are hand-crafted and baked on-site, with high-quality ingredients and proprietary formulations.

“Roark is a best-in-class partner that shares our values of transparency and excellence and has deep expertise with its incredible portfolio of brands,” said Nothing Bundt Cakes CEO Kyle Smith. “We look forward to working with them to enhance support for our bakery owners and continue growing our system while maintaining the joy-giving experience our brand has offered guests for nearly 25 years.”

Clay Harmon, Managing Director at Roark, said, “Nothing Bundt Cakes is a special brand with delicious products that are beloved by guests. We have great admiration for what Kyle and his team have accomplished, and are excited to partner with them.”

Nothing Bundt Cakes is Roark’s 29th restaurant investment and 92nd franchise/multi-location brand.

About Roark

Roark focuses on franchised and multi-location business models in the retail, restaurant, consumer and business services sectors. Since inception, affiliates of Roark have invested in 92 franchise/multi-location brands which generate approximately $54 billion in annual system revenues from 63,000 locations in 50 states and 89 countries. For more information, please visit www.roarkcapital.com.

About Nothing Bundt Cakes

Dallas-based Nothing Bundt Cakes was founded in Las Vegas in 1997 by Dena Tripp and Debbie Shwetz and has grown to 390 franchised and corporate bakeries in 40+ U.S. states and Canada. Bakeries offer Bundt Cakes in a variety of flavors and sizes such as bite-sized Bundtinis®, miniature Bundtlets and 8- and 10-inch cakes plus decorations and gift options for all occasions. Nothing Bundt Cakes is committed to building a team of bakery owners and employees who embody the joy-filled brand, resulting in industry accolades including Entrepreneur's Franchise 500 List, Franchise Business Review's "Top 50 Franchises" and, for five years running, Franchise Times' "Fast and Serious." Please visit www.nothingbundtcakes.com to learn more.

View source version at Roark


Fiesta Restaurant Group, Inc. Reports First Quarter 2021 Results

May, 14 2021

Income from Operations was $1.3 Million for the First Quarter of 2021- Pollo Tropical Q1 Adjusted EBITDA % of Total Revenues Increased from 10.2% in Q1 2020 to 13.8% in 2021


Fiesta Restaurant Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: FRGI), parent company of the Pollo Tropical and Taco Cabana restaurant brands, today reported results for the 13-week first quarter, which ended on April 4, 2021, and provided a business update related to current operations. The Company uses a 52 or 53 week fiscal year ending on the Sunday nearest to December 31. Results for the year ended January 3, 2021 included 53 weeks.

Fiesta President and Chief Executive Officer Richard Stockinger said, “Overall we were pleased with our first quarter sales and profit after considering the impact of Winter Storm Uri on February sales, which negatively affected the entire state of Texas for multiple weeks. Both of our brands showed continued positive momentum in sales trends during the first quarter of 2021 compared to the fourth quarter of 2020, which continued in April. Pollo Tropical first quarter 2021 comparable restaurant sales improved to positive 4.3% compared to the first quarter of 2020 and were -3.3% vs. the first quarter of 2019. Taco Cabana first quarter 2021 comparable restaurant sales improved to -4.3% compared to the first quarter of 2020. We estimate that Winter Storm Uri negatively impacted Taco Cabana first quarter comparable restaurant sales by approximately 480 basis points.”

Stockinger added, “In the first quarter we continued optimizing our operating model to adjust to consumer preferences by making it easier for consumers to enjoy our brands across all channels. We made progress over the quarter improving our drive-thru infrastructure and are making ongoing investments in our digital platform such as enhancements to our geofencing capability to improve curbside speed of service and building an enhanced, digital drive thru experience. We expect these initiatives to drive accelerated sales growth as they reach full implementation.”

Stockinger continued, “We continue to maintain strong margins at both brands. First quarter 2021 income from operations was $1.3 million compared to a loss from operations in the first quarter of 2020. Consolidated Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure(1), was $12.9 million or 8.9% of total revenues, which includes the estimated negative impact of Winter Storm Uri of approximately $1.9 million, and increased 63% compared to the first quarter of 2020. We estimate that Winter Storm Uri negatively impacted Consolidated Adjusted EBITDA as a percentage of total revenues by approximately 110 basis points. Both brands grew Restaurant-level Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure(1), as a percentage of sales to above first quarter 2020 levels. Pollo Tropical grew restaurant-level margin from 18.0% in the first quarter of 2020 to 21.4% in the first quarter of 2021. Taco Cabana grew restaurant-level margin from 8.8% in the first quarter of 2020 to 11.3% in the first quarter of 2021, which includes the estimated negative impact of Winter Storm Uri of approximately 270 basis points.”

Stockinger concluded, “We will continue to concentrate on non-dine-in trade channels to match the evolving changes in customer behavior, and will focus on creating a great guest experience across all channels. Our investments in our digital platform will continue throughout 2021. We are optimistic about the remainder of 2021 and believe that our growth initiatives will continue to build momentum and accelerate sales growth over the balance of the year.”

View full version at Fiesta Restaurant Group


Jack in the Box Inc. Reports Second Quarter FY 2021 Earnings

May, 13 2021


Jack in the Box Inc. (NASDAQ: JACK) yesterday reported financial results for the second quarter ended April 11, 2021 and provided fiscal year 2021 financial guidance.

Jack in the Box total revenues increased 19 percent to $257.2 million, compared to $216.2 million in the comparable period ended April 12, 2020, driven by 20.6 percent growth in system same-store sales. Company same-store sales increased 14.5 percent in the second quarter, reflecting average check growth of 19.9 percent and a 5.4 percent decrease in transactions. Franchise same-store sales increased 21.3 percent.

Increase/(Decrease) in same-store sales:12 Weeks Ended28 Weeks Ended

April 11,

2021

April 12,

2020

April 11,

2021

April 12,

2020Company14.5%(4.1)%10.4%(0.1)%Franchise21.3%(4.2)%16.5%(0.9)%System20.6%(4.2)%15.9%(0.8)%

Net earnings more than tripled to $35.9 million, or $1.58 per diluted share, for the second quarter of fiscal 2021, compared with $11.5 million, or $0.50 per diluted share, for the second quarter of fiscal 2020, which was negatively impacted due to the initial onset of COVID-19.

Darin Harris, chief executive officer, said, "Consumers continue to embrace Jack in the Box's iconic all-day menu and continuous menu innovations, driving growth across every day-part. A shift toward our core premium entrees, combined with an increase in items per order reflecting larger parties, fueled a nearly-20 percent increase in average check. Our performance was strong across all regions throughout the quarter, including in Texas where pandemic dine-in restrictions were lifted much earlier than in our other large markets. Stimulus payments also contributed to our strong performance during the last four weeks of the quarter."

Harris continued, “We are off to a good start through the first four weeks of the third quarter, giving us confidence that our key strategies continue to resonate with guests and position us to maintain momentum while we work closely with our franchisees to grow.”

Operating Earnings Per Share(1), a non-GAAP measure, were $1.48 in the second quarter of fiscal 2021 compared with $0.50 in the prior year quarter. A reconciliation of non-GAAP Operating Earnings Per Share to GAAP results is provided below, with additional information included in the attachment to this release.

View full version at Jack in the Box

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