Stir Crazy Merges with FlatTop Grill

Stir Crazy Restaurants, a portfolio company of The Walnut Group, has merged with fellow Asian food restaurant chain FlatTop Grill, owned by Happy Valley Corp. No financial terms were disclosed.


Chicago Based Stir Crazy Restaurants, LLC and FlatTop Grill, owned by the Happy Valley Corporation of Oak Park IL, have combined to form Flat Out Crazy, LLC, to be headquartered in Chicago.

The combination of two award-winning Asian food concept restaurants results in Flat Out Crazy, LLC having 28 restaurants in 8 states with capability of opening 30 new restaurants over the next three years in both urban and suburban settings across the country.

Stir Crazy Fresh Asian Grill and FlatTop Grill will retain their names as well as their individual concepts. Flat Out Crazy, LLC will run these two concepts independent of one another while at the same time continuing to look to each concept for best practices, people development, efficiencies and enhancements.

“Both restaurant brands provide great value to our Guests,” said Frederic H. Mayerson, chairman and CEO of Flat Out Crazy, LLC. “Having both casual as well as fast casual Asian brands under one umbrella gives us incredible appeal to patrons, a very strong bottom line with combined revenues of the new organization in excess of $60 million with an ability to leverage costs and expenses.”

“With our experienced management, two wonderfully complementary food concepts and a glut of great real estate sites available, the time has never been better for Flat Out Crazy,” he said.

Chairman of Happy Valley Corporation Larry Freed said, “We are very pleased that the union of these two great concepts will provide FlatTop Grill the added visibility and opportunity for growth that our loyal customers have always wanted for it.”

“There is perfect synergy between these two great brands,” said Greg Carey, president and COO of Flat Out Crazy, LLC. “The Asian restaurant category continues to be one of the fastest growing segments in the restaurant industry and FlatTop Grill’s fast casual complements Stir Crazy’s full service casual perfectly.”

Both Stir Crazy Fresh Asian Grill and FlatTop Grill were founded in Chicago in 1995. Stir Crazy Fresh Asian Grill was purchased at the end of 2006 by the Walnut Group, a private equity firm located in Cincinnati. Today the combining of Stir Crazy Fresh Asian Grill and FlatTop Grill forms Flat Out Crazy, LLC. The newly formed Flat Out Crazy, LLC will retain restaurant managers from both brands which will employ a total of 2,000 people.

Two more Stir Crazy Fresh Asian Grill restaurants are scheduled to open late fall of 2009 in Tampa, FL and Overland Park, KS., which would bring the total number of Flat Out Crazy, LLC restaurant locations to 30 by the end of the year and provide an additional 300 jobs to the new locations.

Stir Crazy Fresh Asian Grill and FlatTop Grill are located in the following cities:

Stir Crazy Fresh Asian Grill
    —  Auburn Hills, MI
    —  Brookfield, WI
    —  Boca Raton, FL
    —  Creve Coeur, MO
    —  Estero, FL
    —  Greenwood, IN
    —  Indianapolis, IN
    —  Lyndhurst, OH
    —  Northbrook, IL
    —  Oak Brook, IL
    —  Pembroke Pines, FL
    —  Schaumburg, IL
    —  Warrenville, IL

    —  West Nyack, NY

FlatTop Grill
    —  Bloomington, IL
    —  Champaign, IL
    —  Chicago, IL (4 locations)
        —  North Avenue
        —  Southport
        —  West Loop
        —  Loop (opening September 2009)
    —  Evanston, IL
    —  Fort Wayne, IN
    —  Lombard, IL
    —  Madison, WI
    —  Naperville, IL
    —  Oak Park, IL
    —  Peoria, IL

    —  Wauwatosa, WI