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Outback moves out front

Jackson Bell

The Outback Steakhouse at the Empire Center, open less than a

year-and-a-half, is already outpacing every other franchise in the



With $4.7 million generated in 2002 and its weekly intake about

$117,000, the Australian-themed restaurant is the top seller of all

the 657 Outback Steakhouses, nationally and internationally.

Sixto Rodriguez, one of the restaurant’s managers, said the most


crucial reason for such success is its high community visibility.

Whenever there is a special event in Burbank, Outback Steakhouse is

there, from sponsoring golf tournaments to hosting Burbank Chamber of

Commerce meetings, he said.

“We feel that if we take care of the community, the community will

take care of us,” Rodriquez said.

That proactive approach gets the customers in the door, but what

keeps them coming back is the outstanding service. Sipping a tall mug


of beer and nibbling on a Bloomin’ Onion, resident Veda Moisager said

the restaurant has the best service in the city.

“I like the atmosphere and the food,” she said. “It’s very

congenial here and the servers have great personalities.”

Rodriguez said sales have increased with the recent addition of

lunch hours. The restaurant opens at 11:30 a.m. weekdays and noon

weekends. Sales, he said, have jumped by more than $3,000 daily --

equaling an additional $80,000 each month.


The location helps tremendously, with the Empire Center traffic

drawing in larger crowds and the proximity to the Media City Center,

where shoppers just have to cross the Golden State (5) Freeway.