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Red robin ext.jpg Nancy Luna
Red Robin's chief information officer resigns as the company tries to ramp up its digital channels.

Red Robin's chief information officer Dean Cookson resigns

Cookson, who has been with the company since 2017, is leaving Aug. 28 to pursue other business opportunities

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers Inc. said Dean Cookson, senior vice president and chief information officer, plans to leave the company effective Aug. 28.

Cookson is leaving "to pursue other business opportunities," the casual-dining chain stated in a regulatory document filed Monday. 

Red Robin said the company has agreed to provide Cookson "a lump sum payment equal to twelve months of salary, and COBRA benefits in the form of a lump sum in cash."

The Greenwood Village, Colo.-based brand did not disclose any more information, including naming a successor to Cookson. He had been with Red Robin for about three years, according to his LinkedIn profile.

The depature comes several months after Guy Constant, chief operating officer, left in January. 

In its latest quarter, same-store sales decreased 41.4%, driven by a 38.5% decrease in guest traffic and  a 2.9% decrease in average check.  

CEO Paul Murphy told investors during the company’s last earnings conference call that Red Robin plans to reboot its turnaround plan by adding Donatos Pizza to 31 restaurants in the Seattle area. Murphy said restaurants that currently have Donatos on the menu have recorded higher sales. The company is also trying to ramp up its digital channels, including pushing consumers to direct delivery. 

The brand also plans to roll out a new prototype store in 2021, and will look at remodeling some stores this year.

Contact Nancy Luna at [email protected] 

Follow her on Twitter: @fastfoodmaven

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