Skip navigation

Day again takes the helm of Rock Bottom

LOUISVILLE Colo. Rock Bottom Restaurants founder Frank Day has again assumed day-to-day responsibilities for the casual-dining company following the simultaneous resignations on Monday of chief executive Ned Lidvall, chief financial officer John Coletta and senior vice president of human resources Sugi Randall.

Day, who already served as chairman of the 102-unit operator and franchisor, assumed the additional role of president. Day similarly resumed the helm in 1998, coming out of retirement to succeed Tom Moxcey as president and CEO after his abrupt departure. Day took the company private and eventually rebuilt the senior executive team, in part by elevating Lidvall, a veteran of Brinker International.

Rock Bottom did not say if Day intends to find replacements for Lidvall, Coletta and Randall. No reason was given for their departure.

In December, Rock Bottom cut 19 percent of its corporate staff, blaming the layoffs on minimum-wage increases, rising energy costs, higher supply costs and diminished customer spending. In addition to its namesake brand, the company operates and franchises Old Chicago restaurants.

Also in December, the company postponed a recapitalization. Last year, Rock Bottom had hired investment banking firm Piper Jaffray & Co. to explore a possible exit strategy for Day and other investors.

Lidvall had joined Rock Bottom in 1996 as vice president. He was promoted from chief operating officer to chief executive in 2001, succeeding Day. Lidvall could not be reached for comment.

In a statement, Day expressed gratitude to the three executives for their contributions to Rock Bottom, but did not elaborate on their resignations.

“In these difficult economic times, our focus will be on improving our operating effectiveness in all of our restaurants, every day and with every customer,” Day said. “We offer our sincere thanks to Ned, John and Sugi for their valuable contributions, and wish them continued success as they pursue other opportunities.”

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.