Peach cobbler and gravy-soaked biscuits aren't the only things being topped at Cracker Barrel parent CBRL Group
Back in January, CBRL announced that it was exploring strategic alternatives. That's usually a prelude to a buyout, though one can see the allure of spinning off its casual steakhouse concept. The similarly themed Texas Roadhouse
The pressure for eateries to unload some of their smaller concepts has intensified after the successful debut of Chipotle Mexican Grill
CBRL expects to complete its divestiture of Logan's Roadhouse over the next 12 months. Whether Logan's becomes a stand-alone IPO or the next meal of some hungry acquirer, CBRL's coffers should fill up with more greenery to pay down its debt and possibly even repurchase more shares.
The aggressive Dutch auction buyback will likely find the company swallowing more than a third of its outstanding shares. That's why the shares have been healthy gainers lately, despite lethargic growth akin to watching a plate of Cracker Barrel's lumpy chicken and dumplings dry out.
CBRL has grown sales by no more than 8% in any of the past four years. Earnings did climb 13% last year, but that followed a meager 6% bottom-line improvement the year before.
It would naturally be more refreshing to see CBRL achieve a higher share price by kicking up its organic growth. However, if you've got a hot concept and the ability to orchestrate a massive share buyback, flaunt it.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is a fan of both Cracker Barrel and Logan's Roadhouse. He owns exactly seven shares in CBRL Group. T he Fool has a disclosure policy. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.