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Bagger Dave’s closes a third of its units

The casual-dining chain plans to buy out small shareholders to cut costs.

Bagger Dave’s Burger Tavern has shuttered a third of its units this month and is planning to buy out smaller shareholders to save on reporting costs amid consistently steep losses.

Citing the headwinds facing casual dining, the Michigan-based chain closed five stores around the state in January. Over the summer, Bagger Dave’s closed seven stores. The 10-year-old chain—which once operated 26 restaurants and was formerly owned by Diversified Restaurant Holdings—now has 10 in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana.  

Bagger Dave’s reported a year-over-year revenue drop of 23% for the third quarter of 2017 due to lower guest counts, decreased check averages and unit shutters. The company reported a net loss of $5.5 million over the first nine months of 2017.

The chain, which voluntarily delisted and is not trading over the counter, plans to buy out shareholders with 300 or fewer shares to cut costs associated with being publicly traded.

“The Board believes that the significant costs are not justified, because we have not been able to realize many of the benefits that publicly traded companies sometimes realize,” reads a recent SEC filing by the brand. “In addition, our Common Stock’s extremely limited trading volume, stock price and public float have all but eliminated our ability to use our Common Stock as acquisition currency or to attract and retain employees.”

Diversified Restaurant Holdings, the creator of Bagger Dave’s and the largest franchisee for Buffalo Wild Wings, separated from the burger and beer chain at the end of 2016, aiming to boost the performance of both businesses.

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