Casual dining restaurant chain Chicago Pizza & Brewery has reported sales of US$18.29m for its Q2 ended 30 June, up 14.5% on the Q2 2001 due to new restaurant openings in Irvine, Calif. in August 2001 and Chandler, Ariz. in October 2001, which generated US$2.38m in revenues.

The Huntington Beach, California-based firm added that the sales increase was also down in part to the increase in BJ's same store sales of US$430,000 or 3% for stores opened over 18 months. These increases were partially offset however by the decrease in Pietro's same store sales of 2.8% and the sale or closure of three restaurants in Oregon, the sale of the Hawaii joint venture in 2001 and the closure of the Pietro's restaurant in Eugene, Ore. in February 2002.

Revenues totalled US$35.67m for the H1 2002, up 13.8% year on year due to the new restaurant openings and the increase in BJ's same store sales. Again these increases were partially offset by the decrease in Pietro's same store sales and the sale or closure of restaurants in Oregon and Hawaii. Store level profits (income from operations plus outlet opening expenses plus general and administrative expenses) increased to US$5.8m in 2002 compared to US$4.9m in 2001.

The company reported net income of US$910,000 (or US$0.05 basic EPS) for the Q2 2002 as compared with net income of US$985,000 (or US$0.12 basic EPS) for the Q2 2001 and net income of US$1.65m (or US$0.10 basic EPS) for the H1 2002 as compared with net income of US$1.75m (or US$0.22 basic EPS) for the H1 2001.

The fall in net income is primarily due to increases in general & administrative expenses as the company continued to invest in infrastructure to support growth. During the H1 2002, 7,349,000 redeemable warrants were exercised providing US$35.9m in cash proceeds and increasing the weighted average number of shares outstanding to 16,430,000 from 7,932,000 for the H1 2001. This increase in the weighted average number of shares outstanding contributed to the decrease in basic EPS.

Paul Motenko, co-CEO, commented: "We are very pleased with the continued progress at the store level in terms of both revenue growth and profitability. We believe our investment in infrastructure will enhance profitability in the future as we accelerate our growth strategy."

Co-CEO Jerry Hennessy added: "We anticipate a very active period in company growth as we begin a string of six store openings over the next eight months."