Orange County Business Journal

Mimi's Narrows Loss

Kari Hamanaka Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Irvine-based Mimi’s Café narrowed its losses during the July quarter even as same-store sales continued to fall.

The French countryside-themed restaurant chain, part of Columbus, Ohio-based Bob Evans Farms Inc., reported a loss of $0.8 million. That compares with a $1.1 million loss in the year-ago period.

Mimi’s counts 145 restaurants mostly in California and neighboring states.

Mimi’s revenue for the July quarter fell 3.47% from a year earlier to $86.3 million.

The restaurant chain continued the trend of declining same-store sales that marked most of last year with a 3.3% decline for the July quarter.

Bob Evans provided guidance for the 12 months through April for Mimi’s with same-store sales expected to be down 2% to up 1%.

Mimi’s has launched new menu options, promotions and full bars at some restaurants, among other strategies to boost sales.

A June report from trade publication dealReporter said Bob Evans had begun the process of selling off Mimi’s, with two anonymous sources citing a value of about $210 million for the chain. The article said a private equity firm would be the likely buyer.