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Bob Evans adds new restaurant concept

Aug. 23, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Bob Evans Farms Inc. will partner with Warren, Ohio-based foodservice company AVI Foodsystems Inc., to develop and license a new prototype concept Bob Evans Express.

The first unit opened at the BMW Manufacturing Co., LLC Spartanburg, S.C., manufacturing facility on Aug. 19, where AVI is the foodservice provider, according to a news release.

Bob Evans Express is a non-traditional restaurant concept designed for venues such as workplace cafés, universities, airports, malls, service plazas, hospitals and more. Bob Evans co-developed the concept with AVI after selecting AVI as its foodservice provider for its new corporate campus in New Albany, Ohio. The second Bob Evans Express location will be introduced at the campus' employee café this October.

Each Bob Evans Express will offer a menu of Bob Evans favorites, like Wildfire Chicken Salad, sausage gravy and biscuits, slow-roasted turkey and more.

Founded in southern Ohio, Bob Evans Farms Inc. owns and operates 560 full-service restaurants in 19 states under the Bob Evans Restaurants brand name.

Sears 2Q loss widens as sales weaken at stores

NEW YORK -- It was another bad quarter for Sears Holdings Corp.

The beleaguered retailer, which operates Kmart and Sears stores, said Thursday that its second-quarter loss widened as the company continued to struggle with weak sales and deep discounts.

The results were also hurt by the decline in the number of stores in operation and the lingering effects from its spinoff of the Hometown and Outlet brand.

Shares fell over 8 percent to close down $3.55 at $39.72 on Thursday. The stock's now back near the 52-week low of $38.40 that it hit at the end of 2012.

A series of retailers, including Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Macy's Inc., have reported disappointing quarterly results this month and have issued bleaker outlooks as shoppers deal with an uncertain economy and an increase in the payroll tax.

Popsicle cart idea wins grant, coming to town

HUNTINGTON -- Cara Cheung of Cara's Homestyle Ices won the Entrepreneurs' Café event on Wednesday, receiving a microgrant after presenting her business idea to a voting audience.

Cheung will use her winnings to help purchase a cart to sell popsicles -- made with locally grown produce when possible -- around Huntington. The event was held Wednesday afternoon at the Big Sandy Superstore Arena.

Ohio ripe for stronger apple crop this year

MANSFIELD, Ohio -- Growers say Ohio's 2013 apple crop is shaping up to be much better than last year, when spring frosts, summer drought and other weather extremes took a big bite out of the available crop.

Ohio Fruit Growers Marketing Association president Bill Dodd says warm days and cool nights this month have helped sweeten the fruit and make it larger, giving farmers hope for a strong harvest.

Apple Hill Orchards co-owner Russ Joudrey tells The News Journal in Mansfield that heavier rains earlier this summer were concerning but didn't do much harm.

Many orchards already are harvesting apples and looking forward to cider-making during the fall.

Aeropostale latest teen store to post weak sales

NEW YORK -- Aeropostale Inc. posted a loss in its latest quarter on poor sales, issued a weak outlook and increased the number of stores that it plans to close.

The New York-based company is the latest teen retailer to report slumping sales. Abercrombie & Fitch and American Eagle Outfitters have also noted poor customer traffic. Teen shoppers can be fickle, with constantly changing tastes. Their purchases tied to how much their parents are willing to spend, and higher taxes this year have weighed on consumers.

Aeropostale CEO Thomas Johnson said Thursday that results are particularly disappointing given the effort the company has put into changing the brand recently. Known for putting its logo all over its clothing, Aeropostale is trying to shift to selling trendier, more expensive clothing.

While industry analysts have said that may prove successful for the company in the long run, it could mean slower sales in the short term as shoppers are hesitant about paying more for clothing at the store.