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Bojangles’ eyes store closures after comps drop in Q4

With same-store sales declining and the sudden departure of its CEO, the chain is seeking cost-cutting measures.

With same-store sales declining in the final quarter of 2017 and the sudden departure of its CEO, Bojangles’ Famous Chicken 'n Biscuits is seeking cost-cutting measures.

The quick-service chicken and biscuit chain plans to shutter an undisclosed number of stores while scaling back its remodeling efforts, chain executives said in an earnings call this week, with CFO John Jordan noting that closures in the current year and those to come “could exceed those of recent years.”

Bojangles’ comps dropped 3.1% during the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2017, while total revenues increased 6.2% year over year. For the 2017 fiscal year, its same-store sales declined 2.1%

The chain in 2016 unveiled a dramatic new prototype, the cornerstone of which was a so-called Biscuit Theater that allowed customers to watch its signature item being prepared throughout the day. The new stores also included Wi-Fi, charging stations and communal, high-top seating. But the three new prototype stores did not perform well enough to justify the renovation costs, chain executives said during the call.

The stores “cost way too much, and we did not get the return that we would have expected on those,” Jordan said.

Bojangles’ will move to a “smaller-scale remodel package,” he said.

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