Sonic Corp. to be Acquired by Inspire Brands for $2.3 Billion

Oklahoma City and Atlanta — On September 25, 2018, Sonic Corp. and Inspire Brands, Inc. entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Inspire will acquire Sonic for $43.50 per share in cash in a transaction valued at approximately $2.3 billion including the assumption of Sonic’s net debt.

PJ's Coffee of New Orleans to Bring First Location to Maryland

Silver Spring, Md. — PJ's Coffee of New Orleans, a New Orleans-based coffeehouse, has signed a multi-unit agreement to bring five locations to Maryland, northern Virginia and Washington D.C. within the next 4 years. The first location is projected to open in mid-October in Silver Spring, Md.

Roy Rogers Returns to Long Island With 7-Unit Development Agreement

Frederick, Md. — Roy Rogers® Restaurants has signed an agreement with Burger Brothers Restaurant Group, a multi-brand franchise developer with locations throughout Long Island, Brooklyn and Queens, to open seven new restaurants throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties, as well as Queens. The Western-themed quick-service concept plans to open its first new restaurant on Long Island in fall 2019.

CEC Entertainment, Inc. Appoints New CFO

Dallas — CEC Entertainment, Inc., which operates Chuck E. Cheese's and Peter Piper Pizza restaurants, has appointed James "Jim" A. Howell as chief financial officer, effective September 17, 2018. Howell will replace Dale Black, who is retiring effective September 21.

Jersey Mike’s Opens Two Non-Traditional Outlets

Manasquan, N.J. — Jersey Mike’s Subs opened two non-traditional restaurants the last week of August. The first opened on August 27 on the campus of Seton Hall University in South Orange, N.J. The second opened the next day inside Washington Dulles International Airport in Washington, D.C. (pictured)

Biscuitville Plans First New Market Expansion in a Decade

Greensboro, N.C. — Biscuitville FRESH SOUTHERN® will enter the Fayetteville, N.C., market — its first new market expansion in 10 years — with two restaurants to open mid-year 2019 followed by an additional two restaurants later in the year, pending approval by local authorities. The first restaurant will open in the Spout Springs area late spring 2019, and the second will open mid-summer in Fayetteville.

Slim Chickens Adds Non-Traditional Growth to Global Strategy

Fayetteville, Ark. — Slim Chickens, a leader in the "better chicken" segment of fast-casual restaurants, has enjoyed organic growth since taking the brand from co-founder Tom Gordon's garage to its first location 2 miles from the University of Arkansas in 2003. Now, as Slim Chickens has grown to more than 75 locations in 14 states (as well as the United Kingdom and Kuwait), the brand has expanded its growth strategy to non-traditional locations.

FRONTIER Building Breaks Ground on its First Krispy Kreme

Miami — FRONTIER Building has broken ground on a brand-new Krispy Kreme Doughnuts located at 530 Northeast 167 St. in Miami. The iconic doughnut shop’s new location is being built from the ground up next door to the existing location, which will remain open throughout construction.

Pizza Inn Adds Thrive Point-of-Sale System to Operations

Dallas — Pizza Inn has chosen Thrive for its first company-approved POS system. Thrive is a state-of-the-art system that has the capability to handle the complexity and numerous business models that exist in the Pizza Inn brand, including buffet, carryout, delivery, online ordering, drive-thru and catering, as well as being adaptable to handle Delivery-Carry Out, Express and PIE concepts.

Baskin-Robbins Plans 18 New Locations in Ontario

Canton, Mass. — Baskin-Robbins, the world's largest chain of ice cream specialty shops, continues its aggressive expansion in Ontario, specifically in the Greater Toronto Area with the signing of 18 new store development agreements with six new and existing franchise groups.

Primo Hoagies to Open New Locations in North Jersey

Morristown, N.J. — Primo Hoagies, the Philadelphia-born Italian specialty sandwich franchise, has signed an agreement with Christopher Amico for the North Jersey area. The new hoagie franchise location will be the first of three locations that Amico will be opening in the area.

Biscuitville Names Chief Development Officer

Greensboro, N.C. — Biscuitville FRESH SOUTHERN® has named Anne Goldman, CCIM (Certified Commercial Investment Member), as the company’s chief development officer. Goldman is replacing Tim Hegarty, who recently retired from Biscuitville.

Maui-based Fork & Salad Opening First Mainland Location

Orange, Calif. — Fork & Salad, the Maui-based eatery with a mission to make healthy, farm-to-table cuisine accessible to the masses, plans to open its third corporate location and first U.S. mainland store in Orange, Calif. The location, which will introduce the brand to the mainland U.S. and serve as a training store for future franchisee operators, is slated to open before the end of 2018.  

Tropical Smoothie Cafe® Opens 700th Location

Atlanta — Tropical Smoothie Café, LLC is opening its 700th location in the system, which will open on August 24, 2018 in Hurst, Texas. This milestone showcases Tropical Smoothie Cafe's rapid growth since launching in Destin, Fla., more than 20 years ago and gets the company closer to reaching its goal of opening 120 new cafes in 2018.

Ben & Jerry's Introduces New CEO

Burlington, Vt. — Ben & Jerry's, the progressive ice cream maker from Vermont, has a new chief executive officer. Matthew McCarthy, a 21-year veteran at Ben & Jerry's parent company, Unilever, assumed the position on July 1, 2018.

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