Benihana’s 3rd-Q profit rises as comps grow for all brands

Benihana’s 3rd-Q profit rises as comps grow for all brands

MIAMI — Benihana Inc., operator or franchisor of 92 restaurants, booked a 20.2-percent increase in operating profit to $8.7 million for the third quarter ended Jan. 2 on a 6.6-percent rise in revenues to $50.1 million.

Net income for the 12-week quarter rose 5.6 percent from a year earlier to $2 million, or 20 cents a share. The results included legal expenses of $1.2 million, or 8 cents a share, for litigation with Benihana of Tokyo Inc., a trust of the founding Aoki family that sued Benihana Inc. over its deal last year to obtain $20 million in financing.

Same-store sales at the company’s 55 namesake teppanyaki outlets rose 5.3 percent as guest counts increased 3.1 percent. Benihana also operates five Haru Sushi units eight RA Sushi Bars and one Doraku unit and franchises 23 Benihani restaurants to others.

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