BIRMINGHAM, ALA. — Zoe’s Kitchen, a fast casual restaurant concept serving a menu of Mediterranean-inspired dishes, filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 10 to conduct an initial public offering. The food chain hopes to raise up to $80.5 million as part of the i.p.o.
Zoe’s was founded in 1995 by Zoe and Marcus Cassimus in Birmingham. The company has grown from 21 restaurants, including five franchised locations, across seven states in 2008 to 111 restaurants, including six franchised locations, across 15 states as of Feb. 24. In 2013, Zoe’s opened 27 restaurants, and the company plans call to open 28 to 30 restaurants in 2014.
The company is led by Kevin Miles, who joined Zoe’s Kitchen in 2009 as executive vice-president of operations. In 2011, he was promoted to president and chief operating officer, and in 2012, he was promoted to chief executive officer.
“The word ‘zoë,’ which means ‘life’ in Greek, is embraced in every aspect of the Zoe’s Kitchen culture and is a key component of our concept,” the company noted in its March filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. “Our mission is to ‘deliver goodness to our customers, from the inside out’ by: (i) offering a differentiated menu of simple, tasty and fresh Mediterranean cuisine complemented with several Southern staples; (ii) extending genuine Southern hospitality with personality, including food delivered to your table; (iii) providing an inviting, cosmopolitan, casual-chic environment in our restaurants; and (iv) delivering an outstanding catering experience for business and social events. Our menu offers high-quality meals made from scratch generally using produce, proteins and other ingredients that are predominantly preservative- and additive-free, including our appetizers, soups, salads, and kabobs.”
Zoe’s Kitchen said its company-owned restaurants have generated 16 consecutive fiscal quarters of positive comparable restaurant sales growth, due primarily to increases in customer traffic, which the company said “demonstrates our growing brand equity.”“We have grown our company-owned restaurant A.U.V.s from approximately $1.1 million in 2009 to approximately $1.5 million in 2013, representing an increase of 32.9% over that time period,” the company said. “From 2009 to 2013, our total revenue increased from $20.8 million to $116.4 million and adjusted EBITDA increased from $0.9 million to $10.9 million. We generated a net loss of $2.8 million and $3.7 million in 2009 and 2013, respectively.”