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Equity firm to take P.F. Chang's private in $1.1 billion deal | Chicago eateries say NATO summit may be bad for business | Domino's now has more stores abroad than at home
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May 2, 2012
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On the Front Burner
Equity firm to take P.F. Chang's private in $1.1 billion deal
Private-equity firm Centerbridge Partners will pay $1.1 billion or $51.50 per share to acquire P.F. Chang's and take the company private as it works to reverse slowing sales and traffic at its namesake and Pei Wei Asian Diner chains. On Tuesday, the company reported a 40% drop in profits as customer counts continued to decline.
The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (5/1) 
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Restaurant News
Chicago eateries say NATO summit may be bad for business
The NATO summit scheduled for Chicago later this month is expected to have a $128 million economic impact on the city, but restaurateurs say the event is likely to mean many empty tables. Security around the event will be tight, keeping office workers and other regulars away from downtown, say operators, who are more optimistic about the business prospects stemming from the National Restaurant Association show this weekend.
Crain's Chicago Business (tiered subscription model) (5/1) 
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Domino's now has more stores abroad than at home
Domino's Pizza and its franchisees opened 77 new units internationally in the first quarter, and they now operate more stores abroad than at home, the company said Tuesday. Domino's boasts 4,912 stores in international markets compared to 4,898 in the U.S.
PizzaMarketplace.com (5/1) 
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Social may change the game, but the goal remains the same
Social media is a digital means to boost the customer relationship building efforts that supermarkets have always worked to achieve, says food industry consultant and former Food Marketing Institute Senior VP Michael Sansolo, who shares tips for grocers operating in a social-media age. "So much of social media is simply the basics of human interaction," he says.
SmartBrief/Leadership (5/2) 
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Social marketing and effective communication strategies
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Leading Voices
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Leading Voices
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Loyalty programs build relationships through personal data
Rewards programs can offer customers incentive to repeat their service, but they also can help restaurants better understand the individual customer. "The exciting aspect of loyalty is it's always evolving as you learn about your guests and become more knowledgeable about their dining frequency, their preferences and how they interact with your brand," Dana Benfield, director of loyalty and retention at Red Robin, says.
Direct Marketing News (5/1) 
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Selling happy hours? Check state laws first
Restaurants and bars are increasingly using social media and other digital channels to promote their happy hour specials, but proprietors need to be aware of state and local laws governing the advertising of happy hours and drink deals, writes attorney Kyle-Beth Hilfer. Many states tightly regulate such ads amid concerns about underage drinking, some prohibit happy hour ads outside the venue and a few ban drink specials altogether.
FohBoh.com (4/25) 
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Marketing a brand with multiple personalities
Restaurants looking to boost sales by appealing to distinctly different demographics such as the young-adult bar crowd and families with young children have a steep marketing challenge they can address in one of two ways, writes consultant Denise Lee Yohn. They can either create a single brand platform that works for both audiences with messaging tweaked for each group, or create separate identities with a linked brand.
QSR Magazine (5/2012) 
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Culinary Spotlight
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Growing demand for dark meat pushes prices higher
Chicken thighs and drumsticks have always been one of the least expensive and tastiest meats available, a secret restaurants in the U.S. and abroad have discovered in recent years, says Pat LaFrieda Jr. of Pat LaFrieda Meat Purveyors, which is featured on the Food Network's new show "Meat Men." As a result, supplies are growing scarcer, and the price of dark meat now equals that of the perennially popular chicken breast.
The Arizona Republic (Phoenix) (tiered subscription model)/The Associated Press (5/1) 
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Business Tips and Advice
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