Cosi upbeat about growth potential despite loss

by Eric Schroeder
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DEERFIELD, ILL. — Cosi, Inc. sustained a loss of $3,928,300 in the first quarter ended April 3, which compared with a loss of $2,795,600 in the same period last year.

Cosi said restaurant revenues for the first quarter totaled $29,457,700, compared with $27,205,100 in the first quarter of 2005.

Comparable restaurant sales in the first quarter of 2006, as measured for restaurants in operation for more than 15 months, increased approximately 5% over the first quarter of 2005. Cosi has achieved comparable restaurant sales growth for 18 consecutive quarters.

Cosi said its comparable restaurant sales performance benefited from strong response to its seasonally-based Limited Time Offer program, which features both hot and cold sandwiches as well as salads, and from initiatives to enhance the guest experience during the breakfast period.

In an effort to further build on the Cosi brand name, the company said it will later this year launch a line of hot melts and pizzas in all its restaurants. The company also has introduced "Dinners from the Hearth," a new line of hot dinner offerings for its full daypart locations.

During the first quarter, Cosi opened two company-owned restaurants, in Sacramento, Calif., and Greenwich, Conn., and completed construction on its Elkins Park, Pa., restaurant. Also during the quarter, Cosi closed four restaurants located inside Macy’s stores.

At the end of the first quarter Cosi operated 94 company-owned restaurants, compared to 92 company-owned restaurants at the end of the first quarter last year.

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