restaurants: January 2009 Archives

More Starbucks store closings

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Starbucks is closing 300 more stores to deal with slower sales. The announcement comes just six months after the coffee chain announced 600 store closings and a focus on business essentials. Two hundred of the new stores are in the United States, the rest international.

Starbucks, which is fighting mightily to maintain its growth and profitability in the wilted economy, has embarked on numerous initiatives in recent months to boost its brand image. The company has offered free coffee in exchange for pledging five hours of volunteering or voting in the presidential election.

Black Angus Steakhouse

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ARG Enterprises, owner of Black Angus Steakhouse restaurants, cited its locations as a primse factor in a bankruptcy filing announced this week. Black Angus has 69 outlets in seven states that are "some of the areas hardest hit by the mortgage crisis," according to an ARG executive. Buyouts and store closings are not yet formalized.

B.R. Guest restructuring

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The popular and successful B.R. Guest restaurant chain announced a series of closings as part of a restructuring effort (not, it should be noted, a bankruptcy). "In order to keep our business strong and competitive, we have no choice but to scale back and streamline our company," said president and founder Stephen Hanson.

In New York, B.R. Guest's hometown, the company closed Fiamma, Level V, and this writer's favorite, Ruby Foo's on the Upper West Side. Fiamma and Level V are being converted into event space and a new restaurant, respectively. Blue Water Grill in Chicago is also closing.

The New York Times' Diner's Journal Blog interviewed Fiamma chef Fabio Trabocchi after the announcement. Trabocchi reported sales declines of 25 to 30 percent since the start of the financial crisis.

Timely Demise tracks the retail industry as it changes with our unprecedented economic environment. By David Wertheimer. Did I miss something? Drop me a line.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the restaurants category from January 2009.

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restaurants: February 2009 is the next archive.

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