Chain Operating Report for Nov. 2

A handful of restaurant chains tinker with new prototypes to fuel expansion plans.

Famous Dave's announced plans to open what it terms as a quick-casual shack in Eden Prairie, Minn., in Dec. as it experiments with new formats.

Gatti's Pizza, a 42-year-old pizza brand with locations throughout the Southwest and Southeast debuted a new fast-casual restaurant concept in Austin, Texas. Known as Gatti's, this is the first of six locations the chain plans to open in Austin. In a nod to the environment, Gatti's will use compostable to-go utensils, napkins, cups, pizza boxes and carryout bags.

Jamba Juice is testing a new growth concept called JambaGO, an express service with a limited menu of the brand's most popular smoothies. This new concept will enable Jamba to rapidly expand brand presence. Jamba currently has 15 JambaGO units in test.

La Madeleine opened a new prototype unit in Texas that eliminated the traditional cafeteria lines and features a galley-style pastry station. The intent of the move, according to published reports, is to lower startup costs and pave the way for franchising.

Pizza Inn Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:PZZI) amended and restated its term loan credit facility with Amegy Bank that expands the term facility by $4 million. According to the company, this development will provide additional capacity for continued growth of company-owned Pie Five Pizza Co. and Pizza Inn stores. In addition, the company opened its second Pie Five Pizza Co. location in Las Colinas, Texas.

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