Famous Dave Anderson will again have a role at Famous Dave’s of America, after parting ways during one of many recent regime changes at the company he founded.
Minnetonka-based Famous Dave’s Friday announced the return in a news release, though the company didn’t spell out what his exact role or title would be.
“In addition to helping us craft more of the award-winning bar-b-que that made us famous, Dave is helping us rebuild our company’s culture and improve our guest experience,” Adam Wright, Famous Dave’s interim CEO, said in the release.
Famous Dave’s has been in turmoil. Ed Rensi, the company’s third CEO in three years, abruptly resigned in June.
Anderson hasn’t been involved in Famous Dave’s management for 12 years. But up until 2014, he continued to do some consulting and played a role in the company’s marketing, appearing in advertisements.
“It was a difficult decision when I left the company, but at the time, my vision did not align with the direction being taken by the previous management team,” Anderson said in a statement. “I am excited to be back at the company in an expanded role focused on re-energizing our guests’ experience.”
Rensi, who was hired by activist investors, had big plans to remodel Famous Dave’s restaurants and refresh the menu. In August, Dave’s reported a steep drop in its second-quarter profits, and the company publicly criticized Rensi’s changes, saying they turned off customers.
Famous Dave’s stock closed Friday at $11.46, down 2 cents. During midday trading, it was near its 52-week low and well below its yearly high of $34.73.
Anderson, after cutting ties with Famous Dave’s, launched a new restaurant, Jimmie’s Old Southern Smokehouse BBQ, in Hayward, Wis.
Anderson will continue his involvement with Jimmie’s. “The concept is different from Famous Dave’s, with a quick-serve format, a smaller menu and new recipes,” Anderson said.