The average rate of U.S. systemwide sales growth among Second 100 chains slowed to 3.9 percent in the Latest Year from 5.4 percent in the Preceding Year. A factor in that deceleration: Just 61 chains grew domestic systemwide sales in the Latest Year, with average growth of 10.1 percent, compared with the Preceding Year, when 70 chains increased sales at an average clip of 10.6 percent. The top 10 chains, which had an average sales-growth rate of 31.8 percent, were comprised mostly of Casual-Dining and Limited- Service brands, but were joined by a handful of diverse concepts, including a Beverage-Snack, Chicken and Pizza brand.
Below are five more facts of note about the latest results for the Second 100 Growth in U.S. Systemwide Sales:
1. Twin Peaks, a Casual-Dining concept known for its scantily clad wait staff, mountain lodge decor, cold beer and comfort foods, broke into the Second 100 with a cumulative two-year growth trend in U.S. sales of 158.9 percent. That figure was nearly double the next-best two-year cumulative performance from Dickey’s Barbecue Pit, at 89.4 percent. Twin Peaks’ performance was driven by cumulative two-year increases in U.S. units, at 119.9 percent, and estimated sales per unit, at 24.8 percent.
2. Morton’s the Steakhouse jumped the farthest up the Latest-Year rankings for growth in U.S. sales, moving 68 places from No. 95 in the Preceding Year to No. 27. Latest-Year growth of 6.1 percent from two new restaurants and higher same-store sales countered the chain’s 14.6-percent Preceding-Year decline, which stemmed largely from the closure of seven of its 70 U.S. locations following the then-publicly traded company’s acquisition by privately held Fertitta Entertainment Inc.
3. Among chains that achieved sales growth in both the Latest and Preceding years, Pei Wei Asian Diner had the greatest improvement in ranking — moving up 29 places to No. 31. Pei Wei’s Latest-Year growth of 4.9 percent, on top of a 1.7-percent boost in the Preceding Year, resulted from back-to-back annual increases in U.S. units of 7.6 percent.
4. Smokey Bones Bar & Fire Grill’s 0.3-percent growth in estimated Latest-Year sales represented the smallest gain among the 61 Second 100 chains that added sales during the period. A 1.1-percent bump in estimated sales per unit, to $2.7 million, was needed for that improvement, as the Casual-Dining brand shuttered a unit, ending the year with 65 locations. Smokey Bones this year will open its first new restaurant since 2006 in Bay Shore, N.Y., executives said.
5. Lone Star Steakhouse & Saloon’s sales woes — a 19-percent decrease leading to a last-place ranking — are closely tied to the closure of 36 underperforming locations, or 31.6-percent of its store base, during the past three completed fiscal years. New owner Day Star Restaurant Group has said it has a plan to reposition the brand out of the discount-oriented budget-steakhouse segment and into a “value-plus” concept.