Retail

BREAKING: Steak n Shake offers to acquire Michigan insurer

December 22, 2009
Cory Schouten
The Steak n Shake Co. has offered to acquire all of the outstanding shares of Fremont Michigan Insuracorp Inc. in a deal that could be worth almost $37 million.
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UPDATE: Steak n Shake plan makes 'perfect sense' to investment pro

December 15, 2009
Scott Olson, Cory Schouten
The Steak n Shake Co.’s unusual plan to initiate a reverse stock split has the support of at least one local investment adviser, if in fact the company’s CEO is attempting to model it after Warren Buffett’s holding company, Berkshire Hathaway.
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Steak n Shake plans 20-1 reverse stock split

December 15, 2009
Cory Schouten
The Steak n Shake Co., in an unusual gambit, plans to initiate a reverse stock split that would reduce its number of shares outstanding from almost 29 million to just 1.4 million and boost its per-share price from roughly $12 to $240.
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Stout's Shoes still in step after 123 years

December 12, 2009
Brock Benefiel
After more than a century in business, Indianapolis-based Stout’s Footwear Co. isn’t just surviving. It also is proceeding with plans to open a store next year on the city’s north side.
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Espresso Book Machine could open new pages in local retailingRestricted Content

December 12, 2009
Gabrielle Poshadlo
The pricey Espresso prints and binds books while customers wait. But retailers aren't sure what to expect when the the machine gains wider acceptance.
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Retail sales rise more than expected

December 11, 2009
Associated Press
The government's report came as a surprise because the nation's retailers have been reporting generally lackluster results for the start of the holiday shopping season.
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Bloomington panel won't support chain-store ban

December 9, 2009
 IBJ Staff and Associated Press
A task force appointed by Bloomington's mayor will instead look at other options for protecting the small-town character of the city's downtown from standardized chain stores and eateries.
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Bella Vita restaurant planned for Circle Centre

December 8, 2009
Scott Olson
An Italian restaurant whose owner has ties to embattled local businessman Tim Durham is poised to take the first-floor space in Circle Centre mall formerly occupied by Bertolini’s.
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UPDATE: Simon stock jumps on $2.3B acquisition

December 8, 2009
Cory Schouten
Adding the 22-mall portfolio of Baltimore-based Prime Outlets will give Simon a total of 63 outlet malls with more than 25 million square feet of space.
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Patachou owner's pizzeria granted alcohol permit

December 8, 2009
Scott Olson
Café Patachou owner Martha Hoover’s plan to open a pizzeria next to her trademark eatery at 49th and Pennsylvania streets in Indianapolis cleared its final hurdle Monday.
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Revived Marsh Supermarkets goes up for sale

December 5, 2009
Cory Schouten
Florida-based Sun Capital has completed the turnaround of Marsh Supermarkets and now is seeking a buyer for the home-grown chain. CEO Frank Lazaran told IBJ Sun will sell Marsh “when the market is right, financing is right, and someone is willing to pay a fair multiple.”
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General Growth's refinancing plan could thwart Simon

December 3, 2009
 IBJ Staff and Associated Press
General Growth Properties Inc., the nation's second-largest shopping mall operator, said lenders have agreed to restructure about $9.7 billion in debt. The agreements could put a damper on the acquisition aspirations of rival Simon Property Group Inc.
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Alcohol distributor fights decision allowing big competitor into Indiana

November 28, 2009
J.K. Wall
National Wine & Spirits Inc. suffered a staggering reversal of fortune when the Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission ruled Nov. 5 that Southern Wine & Spirits of America Inc. could distribute here.
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Airport plans holiday events to lure traffic to Civic Plaza

November 27, 2009
Associated Press
Entertainment planned for December could put airport visitors in a spending mood. Retail sales at the terminal have suffered this year due in part to a 10 percent drop in passenger traffic, prompting the Airport Authority to search for ways to boost revenue.
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Employers brace for Cyber Monday

November 25, 2009
Scott Olson
More than 53 percent of workers with Internet access, or 68.8 million, are expected to shop online Monday, according to the Washington, D.C.-based National Retail Federation.
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Patachou owner's pizzeria receives variance approval

November 24, 2009
Scott Olson
Cafe Patachou owner Martha Hoover can now move forward with plans to open a pizzeria next to her trademark eatery at 49th and Pennsylvania streets.
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Biglari was persistent in pressing Western Sizzlin deal

November 23, 2009
Greg Andrews
Steak n Shake CEO Sardar Biglari proposed buying Western Sizzlin in January and again in May and advocated the unusual structure of the $39 million transaction.
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Indianapolis looks to Cleveland, Philadelphia for City Market examples

November 21, 2009
 IBJ Staff
The troubled Indianapolis City Market is looking East for a new direction. This summer, its executive director, Jim Reilly, visited Philadelphia and Cleveland to observe their successful urban markets and seek pointers that might be applied here.
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Airport retailers want relief from street pricing policy

November 21, 2009
Chris O'Malley
Airport concessionaires stung by a 10-percent drop in passenger traffic have asked the Indianapolis Airport Authority to ease a policy that was implemented more than 10 years ago to keep prices in line with what consumers pay outside the airport.
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Pizza restaurants in works; wine shop heading to Fishers

November 21, 2009
 IBJ Staff
Hot Box Pizza plans to open a downtown location in the Harness Factory Lofts building, and WineTyme, a new local shop selling wines, craft beers and gourmet food, is coming to Fishers.
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Boot, apparel sales boost Shoe Carnival profit

November 20, 2009
Shoe Carnival Inc.'s quarterly same-store sales, which measure revenue from locations open at least a year, climbed 10.2 percent.
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Failed jewelry retailer to sell millions in inventory

November 16, 2009
Greg Andrews
An old-line Indianapolis jewelry business has shut down, setting the stage for the sale of millions of dollars in remaining inventory through auctions planned in Indianapolis, Chicago, Miami and Naples, Fla.
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Noble Roman's reports profit despite lower revenue

November 10, 2009
Andrea Muirragui Davis
Indianapolis-based Noble Roman's Inc. said late Monday that it posted a third-quarter profit of $459,535, or 2 cents per share—a 44-percent improvement over the same period last year. But revenue for the quarter fell to $1.9 million, from $2.2 million in 2008.
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Former Smith-Holden Music employees open new Bloomington store

November 7, 2009
 IBJ Staff
Two key employees of the recently closed store in downtown Bloomington have opened their own venture, Melody Music Shop.
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HHGregg's quarterly earnings, sales jump

November 5, 2009
HHGregg reported a rise in quarterly profit and sales Thursday morning that exceeded analyst expectations, despite a decrease in same-store sales.
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  1. I took Bruce's comments to highlight a glaring issue when it comes to a state's image, and therefore its overall branding. An example is Michigan vs. Indiana. Michigan has done an excellent job of following through on its branding strategy around "Pure Michigan", even down to the detail of the rest stops. Since a state's branding is often targeted to visitors, it makes sense that rest stops, being that point of first impression, should be significant. It is clear that Indiana doesn't care as much about the impression it gives visitors even though our branding as the Crossroads of America does place importance on travel. Bruce's point is quite logical and accurate.

  2. I appreciated the article. I guess I have become so accustomed to making my "pit stops" at places where I can ALSO get gasoline and something hot to eat, that I hardly even notice public rest stops anymore. That said, I do concur with the rationale that our rest stops (if we are to have them at all) can and should be both fiscally-responsible AND designed to make a positive impression about our state.

  3. I don't know about the rest of you but I only stop at these places for one reason, and it's not to picnic. I move trucks for dealers and have been to rest areas in most all 48 lower states. Some of ours need upgrading no doubt. Many states rest areas are much worse than ours. In the rest area on I-70 just past Richmond truckers have to hike about a quarter of a mile. When I stop I;m generally in a bit of a hurry. Convenience,not beauty, is a primary concern.

  4. Community Hospital is the only system to not have layoffs? That is not true. Because I was one of the people who was laid off from East. And all of the LPN's have been laid off. Just because their layoffs were not announced or done all together does not mean people did not lose their jobs. They cherry-picked people from departments one by one. But you add them all up and it's several hundred. And East has had a dramatic drop I in patient beds from 800 to around 125. I know because I worked there for 30 years.

  5. I have obtained my 6 gallon badge for my donation of A Positive blood. I'm sorry to hear that my donation was nothing but a profit center for the Indiana Blood Center.

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