Arkansas Business: Earnings up for companies

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Upbeat earnings reports from companies including Morgan Stanley, General Electric and PepsiCo helped push most stocks higher on Thursday.

Still, the Dow ending that day with a slight loss, hurt mainly by a big loss in shares of IBM.

Markets were closed on Friday in observance of the Good Friday holiday.

Earnings report released today

Among earnings reports today, Deltic Timber Corp. of El Dorado. The company will report first-quarter earnings after the market closes. Last week also ending on some banking news.

Home BancShares Inc. of Conway, the holding company for Centennial Bank, announced that it is buying another Florida bank.

Home BancShares signing a deal to purchase Florida Traditions Bank, which has eight branches between Orlando and Tampa.

Home BancShares Chairman Johnny Allison expecting the purchase to be finalized this week, with the purchase closing late in the third quarter.

Traditions operates eight banking locations in central Florida, including its main office in Dade City.

Per the deal, Traditions' shareholders will receive about $43 million of Home Bancshares common stock.

Slim Chickens adding more locations

Slim Chickens, the 11-year-old restaurant chain started by a pair of Fayetteville entrepreneurs, is poised to add more locations.

Tom Gordon, president of the chain, telling Arkansas Business in an interview this week that he and business partner Greg Smart are want to have 600 restaurants by 2025.

The chain opened its first location in Fayetteville on Feb. 17, 2003 and it now has 13 locations with a 14th, again in Fayetteville, scheduled to open June 16.

The chain also has locations in Little Rock, Rogers, Jonesboro, Conway; Hot Springs; and Texarkana, Texas. There's also three in Oklahoma.

Annual revenue in 2013, counting every unit, was between $15 million and $20 million.

The first Slim Chickens in Little Rock, at 4500 W. Markham, took in $1.3 million in sales in 2013, even though it didn't open until May of that year.


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