Famous Dave's owner changes its name again, buys Mexican restaurant chain in Phoenix – Star Tribune

The owner of Famous Dave’s reported a profitable fourth quarter and another move beyond barbeque with the acquisition of Barrio Queen, a Mexican food restaurant group in Phoenix.
The Minnetonka-based parent company also announced that it would change its name from BBQ Holdings Inc. to Famous Hospitality Inc. to reflect the diversity of its restaurant brands.
“We continue to successfully execute our three core growth initiatives, which include filling latent capacity of our current restaurants, organic unit growth, and build a diversified portfolio of food and beverage brands via accretive M&A,” said Jeff Crivello, the company’s chief executive.
The company’s locations did experience a traffic drop in December and January associated with the omicron variant. But as cases declined, Famous Hospitality saw rebounds in both dine-in traffic and catering sales in February and in March so far, he said.
Same-store sales rose versus a year earlier across the company’s restaurant concepts: Famous Dave’s, Granite City Food & Brewery, Village Inn, Bakers Square, Clark Crew BBQ and Real Urban BBQ.
The Famous Dave’s and Real Urban BBQ units reported same-store sales increases compared with the 2019 period, a sign they were returning to pre-pandemic business levels.
For its fourth quarter ending Jan. 2, the company said it earned about $2.6 million, or 25 cents a share, compared to a loss of about $2.8 million, or 31 cents a share, for the year-ago period. Revenue nearly doubled to $68.4 million from a year earlier.
The company’s share price rose 5% to $12.61 on Monday.
Famous Hospitality said that the $28 million purchase price of the Barrio Queen chain will be funded with cash and debt. This month, the company also closed on the purchase of three “bar-centric” locations for $4.5 million.
Last year, the company acquired Tahoe Joe’s restaurants and the Village Inn and Bakers Square brands. The Tahoe Joe’s transaction also included the intellectual property of HomeTown Buffet, Ryan’s Buffet, Furr’s Fresh Buffet and Old Country Buffet, although the company has said it had no immediate plans to reopen the buffet brands.

Gita Sitaramiah is the Star Tribune consumer reporter.
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