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FE&S delivers relevant news of the day to the foodservice equipment and supplies marketplace.

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Qdoba Mexican Grill promoted a pair in its restaurant operations department and an other in the area of franchise development.

Six restaurant chains announced operating results in the past week.

In an attempt to drive shareholder value, according to a company release, Wendy's/Arby's Group, Inc. (NYSE:WEN), is exploring strategic alternatives for Arby's Restaurant Group, Inc., including a sale of the brand. A quick-service sandwich chain, Arby's operates nearly 3,700 restaurants. In contrast, Wendy's operates 6,500 restaurants in more than 20 companies.

Family dining giant Denny's adds a 30-year veteran of the restaurant industry to its management team.

Dallas-based Dave & Buster's Inc. named Dolf Berle president and chief operating officer.

Manitowoc Foodservice made several changes to its management structure. These steps include some restructuring of Manitowoc's management team in the Americas and Europe and changes to the structure of its Asia Pacific Region team.

Fcusing on international growth, Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE:YUM - News) has placed its Long John Silver's and A&W All-American Food Restaurants for sale. The company has also begun the process to identify a buyer.

P.F. Chang's China Bistro, Inc. (NASDAQ: PFCB), promoted KC Moylan to president of its Pei Wei Asian Diner concept. Moylan previously served as Pei Wei's chief operating officer, a position he has held since 2007.

Illinois Tool Works has expanded the cooking options available in its Vulcan line through the acquisition of certain assets from TEC.

As a result of a decline in same-store sales and customer traffic levels, the National Restaurant Association's Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) posted a score of 99.9 in November, down 0.8 percent from October.

National coffee house chain Caribou Coffee continues to diversify its breakfast menu.

Purchasing and supply management experts expect economic growth in the United States will continue in 2011, according to the Semiannual Economic Forecast released by the Institute for Supply Management.

Fifteen-year foodservice industry veteran Tom Donovan continues to climb the corporate ladder at Unified Brands.

Longtime foodservice professional Walt Hennebaul passed away on Dec. 20, 2010. He was 70 years old.

Cooper-Atkins Corp. announced a trio of promotions and several new hires within its sales organization.

Mobile food trucks represent one emerging trend that has the foodservice industry buzzing. You can count the University of California Santa Barbara among the members of the non-commercial segment that is willing to take a food truck for a spin. Late last year the university took delivery of a new food truck to help with the foodservice concessions at its soccer stadium.

Cold Stone Creamery announced plans to introduce a yogurt concept into its existing stores in 2011.

FES1101Trends-ConceptBranches2Operators are looking to expanded retail options and diversifying their food services as ways to boost profits. That's what Branches Wood Fired Chop House looked to do when it opened its doors in November. Designers maximized the 10,500 square feet of space in Ukiah, Calif. to house a destination restaurant, gourmet marketplace and an Irish Pub.

In the main kitchen, which produces food for all three spaces, chef/owner Munther Massarweh teams up with pastry chef Debbie Coenen to deliver American comfort foods to the main restaurant and pub as well as house-cured meats and house-baked breads for the butcher shop and bakery. The retail portion also offers all-day organic coffee and pastries and a variety of take-out options including prepared entrees, steaks and pasta, sausage, rotisserie chicken and other specialty foods. The restaurant also plans to create a chef's garden to grow fresh herbs, fruits and vegetables for use in its dishes. An exhibition kitchen flowing into the dining room shows cooks at work, while poster-size food photography helps market the concept's housemade appeal.

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