Skippers Inc., the Edmonds, Wash.-based seafood quick-service restaurant chain, could open as many as three new restaurants here, says Brad Barnett, the companys new president and CEO.
As recently as 1995, the company had operated seven Spokane- and Coeur dAlene-area Skippers Seafood N Chowder House outlets here, but that number has dwindled down to twoone in the Spokane Valley, at 13920 E. Sprague, and one in Coeur dAlene.
Barnett, who assumed Skippers CEO post just a few weeks ago, acknowledges that the company has had a difficult time in the Spokane area, but adds it is on the move. We desperately want to be there.
Skippers has opened four new restaurants in the past 60 days outside of Spokane, says Barnett.
The companys primary goal here now is to open an outlet on busy Division Street, he says.
Skippers had operated an outlet near the Division Street Y, but closed it in 1999 to make way for a Rite-Aid Corp. store.
It was a killer site. I wish I had that back, Barnett says.
Skippers is currently negotiating with a developer here who would build a new building on Division that would house the new outlet, but Barnett declines to disclose the location or additional details about the project for now. He also declines to estimate when the company would open additional outlets.
Since 1999, Skippers has closed outlets on the South Hill, at 2808 E. 29th, and on the North Side, at 3316 N. Monroe, because its leases expired at those locations, and the buildings were at least 20 years old and didnt have drive-through service capability or up-to-date facilities, Barnett says.
As part of its growth push, Skippers has developed a new menu.
Skippers currently has 75 company-owned outlets and four franchise outlets in Washington, Idaho, Oregon, Utah, Montana, and Alaska.
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