Retail

Resurgent Finish Line eyes plan for cash hoard

May 15, 2010
Cory Schouten
Finish Line Inc. is working to deploy the money it has built up through cost-cutting. The 684-store chain plans to reinvest in its core business, return cash to shareholders through higher dividends and share repurchases, and diversify its business.
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Unorthodox pay package puts Biglari on defensiveRestricted Content

May 15, 2010
Greg Andrews
Sardar Biglari, chairman and CEO of Biglari Holdings Inc., the Texas-based parent of Steak n Shake, rolled out a hedge-fund-style compensation plan for himself late last month that could put staggering sums in his pocket.
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INSIDE DISH: Real estate deals central to success for Santorini

May 14, 2010
Mason King
Santorini_watchvideoShrewd moves have allowed restauranteur Taki Sawi to cement Santorini Greek Kitchen in Fountain Square and pave the way for future expansion.
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Ritter's buyer embarking on custard chain turnaround

May 12, 2010
Scott Olson
After purchasing the Franklin-based company two years ago, TruFoods says it now is positioned to seek franchisees in an attempt to grow the Ritter's chain to 100 locations within five years.
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Cabela's revs up expansion, but leaves Greenwood off list

May 10, 2010
 IBJ Staff
The Nebraska-based outdoor retailer plans to open new stores again after a two-year, recession-induced halt on expansion. But the company is not reviving its plan for the 96-acre plot it owns in Greenwood.
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Sahm's to open tavern in downtown Indianapolis

May 8, 2010
 IBJ Staff
The bar and restaurant will take about 3,600 square feet in the building, which has OneAmerica and ExactTarget as its anchor office tenants.
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INSIDE DISH: Brugge Brasserie brews plans for expansion

May 7, 2010
Mason King
Brugge_WatchVideoThe Broad Ripple-based brewpub's owners bet its Belgian beer and vittles will go over just as well outside Indy. But first they need $1 million from an investor, in part to streamline brewing.
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Noble Roman's reports lower profit, revenue

May 7, 2010
Indianapolis-based pizza and sub chain saw a decline in royalties and ongoing fees from franchisees in the first quarter.
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Denny's proxy fight follows Steak n Shake template

May 4, 2010
Cory Schouten
A group of dissident investors is trying to wrest control of the Denny's restaurant chain using the same formula that led to a successful takeover of Steak n Shake.
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All Things Automotive aims for national reach, 20 stores by year-endRestricted Content

May 1, 2010
Chris O'Malley
GM's axing of its Saturn brand may fuel the nationwide emergence of an Indianapolis-based used-car franchisor. The first All Things Automotive franchise will open this month in Fishers, at the former Saturn store owned by Lockhart Automotive Group.
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Entrepreneurial couples banking on demand for art

May 1, 2010
 IBJ Staff
One art-collecting couple has opened a fine-art gallery in Zionsville, while the founder of a contemporary craft show is planning a boutique in Irvington.
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Work begins on Penn Arts apartment, retail project

May 1, 2010
 IBJ Staff
Renovation work finally has begun on the building at 16th and Pennsylvania streets. Developer Christopher Piazza found two equity partners for the project because banks were unwilling to lend.
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Simon Property cooperating With FTC on Prime Outlets inquiry

April 30, 2010
Bloomberg News
Some retail tenants of outlet malls are concerned about Simon gaining too much market power should its acquisition of Prime Outlets be approved.
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INSIDE DISH: Papa Roux pops after stumbling at the start

April 30, 2010
Mason King
PapaRoux_WatchvideoArt Bouvier fled his corporate IT gig to open a small Cajun place without a business plan or prior restaurant experience. After a number of blunders, Papa Roux looks like it will pan out.
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Many retail locations plagued by vacanciesRestricted Content

April 24, 2010
Scott Olson
Vacancy rates unseen in 20 years are hampering efforts by developers.
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With five new acquisitions, Skillman builds car-lot dynastyRestricted Content

April 24, 2010
Peter Schnitzler
Ray Skillman bought five car lots in the last 12 months from other dealers who have struggled during the recession. Skillman now ranks among the five largest dealers in the area, and his chain is poised for even more growth.
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INSIDE DISH: Mug-n-Bun rides on 50-year formula

April 23, 2010
Mason King
MugnBun_WatchVideoIBJ's new video feature on restaurateurs tries curbside service at Speedway's Mug-n-Bun, unchanged in concept since the 1960s but now sporting subtle tweaks.
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Santorini owner realizes 'American Dream' with national honor

April 21, 2010
Scott Olson
Fountain Square eatery owner Taki Sawi is one of only three restaurant operators to receive an award given by National Restaurant Association every two years.
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Biglari's comparisons to Buffett debatedRestricted Content

April 17, 2010
Cory Schouten
Sardar Biglari has copied some of the trademarks of his investing idol, Warren Buffett, including a folksy annual letter to shareholders. But Biglari is just starting his career and already is showing signs of taking a different approach than that of the Oracle of Omaha.
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INSIDE DISH: Restaurateur rebounds with Pizzology

April 16, 2010
Mason King
Pizzology_WatchVideoAfter a sales slowdown during the recession forced him to close the high-end eatery L'explorateur, Neal Brown mulled a move into Neopolitan-style pizza with friendlier price points. The result—Pizzology Pizzeria & Pub—is off to a profitable start.
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Local Scholars Inn sold, to reopen under new name

April 14, 2010
Scott Olson
The Mass Ave. restaurant is set to become Mesh, which will feature a more casual atmosphere and menu, as well as a new operator who will lease the space from the building's owners.
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Simon Property Group cranks up bid for General Growth

April 14, 2010
Simon Property Group upped its offer for rival General Growth Properties Inc., pledging to invest $2.5 billion in a reorganization and match the terms of a bankruptcy exit plan led by Brookfield Asset Management Inc.
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Report: Simon may drop General Growth bid

April 12, 2010
Bloomberg News
Shares in General Growth Properties Inc., the second-biggest U.S. mall owner, fell as much as 6.7 percent Monday morning after a newsletter report that Simon Property Group Inc. may abandon a takeover bid for its smaller rival.
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INSIDE DISH: Harried chef at R bistro tries to keep it fresh

April 9, 2010
Mason King
InsideDish_Rbistro_WVIn IBJ's new video feature on front-burner business issues that vex restaurants, Regina Mehallick of downtown's R bistro mulls the financial and personal demands of running a chef-owned eatery with a menu that changes every week.
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Steak n Shake unveils new restaurant prototype

April 9, 2010
Cory Schouten
The company now known as Biglari Holdings Inc. on Thursday unveiled a new prototype for future Steak n Shake restaurants. CEO Sardar Biglari said the goal is to open about 1,500 new franchise locations in the coming years.
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