Famous Dave's owner to buy Village Inn, Bakers Square chains

The deal is worth $13.5 million.
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The parent company of Minnesota-based Famous Dave's is buying the Village Inn and Bakers Square chains, both of which have recently emerged from bankruptcy.

BBQ Holdings announced Monday that it is buying the chains for $13.5 million.

Both chains were previously owned by American Blue Ribbon Holdings, but it declared bankruptcy in January 2020. It emerged from bankruptcy in September, splitting its operations into two separate companies, with Village Inn and Bakers Square operating under VIBSQ Holdings.

Now both are set to move under the ownership of BBQ Holdings, which will add 148 restaurants to its portfolio.

This includes the three remaining Village Inn restaurants in Minnesota, in Moorhead, Virginia, and Wyoming, and the three remaining Bakers Squares in Coon Rapids, Mankato, and St. Paul-Highland Park.

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The company says it will launch a "new Village Inn prototype for growth" early next year, and plans to expand the sale of Bakers Square pies through retail and its other restaurants – potentially including at Famous Dave's restaurants – later this year.

The latest acquisition by BBQ Holdings comes after it bought another chain with a Minnesota presence, Granite City, out of bankruptcy in 2020.

BBQ Holdings CEO Jeff Crivello said: "We believe this acquisition will be accretive to our earnings and that there is a significant amount of pent-up demand for dining, and we expect that demand to grow throughout the year at our existing brands. We will provide future guidance as the year develops."

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