Quiet indeed! That's a good sign - not too many momentum zombies in this business yet. BOBE should sell Mimi's and focus on Bob Evans rest's and branded food. Business value should increase materially if they get a half-way decent price on Mimi's and use the cash to buyback stock, pay-off debt and fund select remodels.
Thanks for your comment. I think the weakness in BOBE is organic earnings growth. Bob Evans rest is just starting to grow sales, but at a cash cost of remodels. Overall though, I can't see much more than a 1% to 4% organic same store sales growth for that concept in long-term. The branded food biz has decent growth potential, but high commodity costs are hurting margins today (but maybe not tomorrow?). Mimi's needs to go.
To me, the limited organic growth opportunity doesn't make it an unappealing investment. It just means BOBE has to use its precious cash & resources wisely to grow. I'm thinking one obvious avenue is to sell Mimi's. The other is to attempt effective marketing/branding campaigns for the branded food biz. I view the Bob Evans rest's as stable, slow-to-no growth cash generators - they're the classic, hometown friendly place that will be around for a long time and generate cash. Other avenues to grow the biz value is wise use of cash - debt pay-down, branded food marketing, opportunistic stock buybacks, and effective cost controls (which was done this most recent Q). I'm not an expert on the bob evans real-estate value, but I know they own their land and selling it in a cash-for-LT lease commitment is another way to growth the value. It isn't unreasonable to see BOBE in mid-$40's in late '12/early '13. So, we'll see...!