• Chicago Pizza & Brewery completes private stock placement

HUNTINGTON BEACH, California -- Chicago Pizza & Brewery, Inc., headquartered here, completed a private placement of 3.2 million shares of common stock to its largest shareholder, BJ Chicago LLC, on August 20. Price per share for the deal was $2.50, and amounted to $8 million.

The company operates 26 casual dining restaurants placed in several Western states. Among them are 21 BJ's Brewhouse a concept centering on Chicago-style pizza and hand-crafted beers (several of the restaurants are actual brewpubs), as well as five Pietro's casual Italian restaurants.

In June, the company landed at number 45 on the inaugural FORTUNE list of Top 100 Fastest-Growing publicly held small businesses in America.

Following the stock placement, Chicago Pizza & Brewery's financial statement showed $27 million in equity and $12 million in cash. It also has an unused $4 million a line of credit with Union Bank. Co-CEO Paul Motenko, expects the equity infusion will fuel the growth of the BJ's concept.

"At a time when some other restaurant companies are slowing their growth because of a lack of financial resources, we are poised to capitalize on prime site opportunities as they become available," Motenko said.

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