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Famous Dave's closes more restaurants, including its Bloomington location

Famous Dave's of America Inc. continues to shut down underperforming restaurants as the chain tries to rebound from years of slumping sales.


The barbecue chain announced Monday that it had closed six company-owned restaurants over the past two quarters. Locally, the Famous Dave's restaurant in Bloomington closed its doors in late July. The restaurant was at 5101 W 98th St. Calls to the store direct customers to the nearby Minnetonka location.


Famous Dave's has 14 restaurants left in Minnesota. The company didn't immediately respond to a message seeking further comment.


The items from the Bloomington Famous Dave's are being auctioned off onlinefrom a warehouse in Roseville. The auction is being coordinated by New York-based RestaurantEquipment.Bid.

In its second quarter, Famous Dave's same-store sales were down 3.2 percent at franchise restaurants and down 2.2 percent in our company-owned restaurants. But sale declines were at a lower rate compared to last year (4.3 percent at franchised locations and 6.4 percent at company stores), a sign executives said was a result of new promotions and menu adjustments.

"Trends improved in the latter half of the quarter, as we launched our system-wide day of the week promotion Smokin' Deals and completed the rollout of our new signature cocktail beverage program to our company-owned restaurants," Famous Dave's CEO Mike Lister said, according to a transcript of the company's earnings call posted on Seeking Alpha.

In May, Famous Dave's also said it would accelerate a plan to sell off all of its company owned restaurants to franchisees over the next two years to free up costs.

There are currently 164 Famous Dave's restaurants, 29 are company owned and 135 are franchised. At the start of 2012, there were 187 Famous Dave restaurants, 54 were company owned and 133 were franchised.

Famous Dave's changed a good portion of its leadership in the past year. It appointed former Dairy Queen CEO Chuck Mooty as its board chair in March. it named Lister its CEO in October. He was the company's fourth CEO in as many years, and its sixth since 2008.

Minnetonka-based Famous Dave's (NASDAQ: DAVE) is Minnesota's 51st largest public company when ranked by revenue.