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A Buffet of New Clients: With SS&G Merger, BDO Now Boasts Nation’s Largest Restaurant Niche

The union between the two Top 100 accounting firms automatically ushers in roughly 300 SS&G restaurant clients to BDO’s portfolio, transforming the Chicago-based firm’s limited foodservice vertical to the largest restaurant practice in the country among CPA firms.


Third quarter results for Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen Inc. were easy to digest – even for the most finicky investor.

The 2,300-unit quick serve operator and franchisor reported that domestic store sales rose 7.2 percent for the quarter – its 18th consecutive period of same unit growth – while its overseas restaurants posted gains of 8.3 percent. In the company’s “heritage” markets – New Orleans and Memphis – same store sales climbed 12.7 percent.


Famous Dave’s: Turnaround Case

Famous Dave’s CEO Ed Rensi revealed the company’s directives during a third quarter earnings call with investors and analysts. Rensi said he will look toward the company’s existing pool of franchisees as well as interested outside parties to acquire available company stores. In addition, anywhere from 4-6 franchised units are expected to be in the pipeline for 2015.

Shedding A Light on J. Alexander’s IPO

During a busy lunch at a J. Alexander’s restaurant in Ohio, a manager boasted that lunch business was good but dinner was flat, owing to the closing of the garishly lit Champps Americana next door. The lights attracted people, who then spotted its subtly lit neighbor. The bright lights of the public market, however, will soon illuminate the polished-chain. In late October, majority owner Fidelity National Financial filed for an initial public offering on the NYSE, hoping to raise $75 million.

Red Robin’s Earning’s Surprise: Tax Credits and Lower G&A Expenses Outshine Operating Results

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers (Nasdaq: RRGB) better than expected operating results in the recent third quarter ended October 12th, surprised the short sellers. Despite customer traffic down 2.3% and restaurant-level operating profit margin decreasing by 90 basis points (cost of ground beef is up more than 25% from a year ago), the 500+ unit casual diner reported $0.50 earnings per share in the quarter, beating analyst estimates of $0.34 by $0.16. The stock rose $8.53, or 15.5% on the news.
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