BBQ Holdings’ Growing Smorgasboard
Famous Dave’s was a troubled business for much of its history. Now operating under the BBQ Holdings Inc. banner, it’s a rapidly changing company, steadily acquiring other concepts that have been struggling or in bankruptcy; Dave’s is just one of seven restaurant brands in the fold. With its expanding portfolio, third-quarter sales were up 56 percent. CEO Jeff Crivello says his appetite is unsated.
Mergers and acquisitions “is one of our three pillars of growth,” he says. “No. 1 is to fill unused capacity in our current restaurants with ghost kitchens [kitchens producing for to-go/delivery restaurants], virtual brands, and dual concepts. The second is organic unit growth. Famous Dave’s new service-line prototype just opened in Coon Rapids, and our new Village Inn prototype is scheduled to open in Q1 of 2022. And the third is M&A. We have a strong balance sheet and will make acquisitions as we see appropriate. We are looking for a bar concept, and separately, a pizza concept.”