Chipotle Plans to Open ‘Better Burger’ Restaurant Chain

chipotle-plans-burger-chain

Chipotle Mexican Grill said Wednesday it has applied for a trademark for “Better Burger” as part of a business diversification move to open a burger restaurant chain.

“We have two non-Chipotle growth seeds open now ― ShopHouse and Pizzeria Locale ― and have noted before that the Chipotle model could be applied to a wide variety of foods,” said Chris Arnold, a Chipotle spokesman.

ShopHouse, a Southeast Asian food chain, opened in 2013. Last year, Chipotle began expanding Pizzeria Locale, which specializes in wood-fired pizza, beyond its initial locations in Denver and Boulder, Colo.

Shares of Chipotle fell 65 cents, or 0.14%, in after-hours trading to $465.50.

The expansion plans are drawn up as the burrito maker is struggling to recover from an E.coli outbreak and other health safety issues that slowed its business much of last year.

In February, Chipotle, based in Denver, reported its worst quarterly performance as a publicly traded company. Its fourth-quarter net income fell 44% year-over-year to $67.9 million. And same-store sales were down 14.6%.

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SOURCE: USA Today, Roger Yu