NORTHBOROUGH, Mass. -- Bertucci's Corp. took a $4.2 million charge to earnings in the quarter ended Oct. 3, resulting from restaurant closures.

A report published by Foodservicetoday.com said the company's restaurant closures increased sharply in the third quarter, following a shut-down trend started in the second quarter.

Complicating Bertucci's woes is its inability to unload its leases to new tenants.

"It was originally expected the company would be able to exit these locations and the related leases, but due to market conditions, [it] has been unable to sell or sublease these locations or exit the related leases," Bertucci's said in an SEC filing.

Same-store comp sales for Bertucci's also dipped 1.6 percent during the quarter, though net sales increased by 5.3 percent ($1.93 million) due to four new restaurants operating in the in the period.

As of October 3, 2001, Bertucci's Corp. owned and operated 75 full-service, casual dining, Italian-style restaurants under the name Bertucci's Brick Oven Pizzeria. The restaurants are located primarily in New England and Mid-Atlantic United States.

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