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The polished-casual operator intends to stay in the high end of the casual market with a new steak and seafood venture.
The closings are necessary to deliver on the casual brand’s long-term turnaround plan, management says.
The company said it plans to invest in the stores at an accelerated rate.
Jana Partners is resuming its call for a strategic redirection two years after a truce was struck.
One Group intends to use the concept as a growth vehicle. The deal has yet to be approved by the bankruptcy court overseeing Kona’s operation.
The restaurant operator, which has bought numerous chains out of bankruptcy, has a “stalking horse” bid on another one.
Management is focusing on higher-priced menu options to help margins while aiming to please value-hunters with improved operations.
The casual-dining veteran is responsible for growing the regional brand and its sister concept.
Brinker International said the redirections will set up the casual giant for extended growth.
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