Dave & Buster's Ready for Opening with 240 Employees

Dave & Buster's Ready for Opening with 240 Employees

We visited last week with Chuck Beyer, general manager of Dave & Buster’s at 10900 Bass Pro Parkway in Little Rock, a couple of days before the restaurant/entertainment venue, set to open today to the public, held a media preview.

Beyer, who’s been with D&B for more than a year and in the hospitality industry for 27 years (and was an actor before that; check his IMDb profile), was excited about opening a Dave & Buster’s in the city where the concept for the Dallas-based company was born. D&B is the result of a melding of Slick Willy’s World of Entertainment, opened in 1977 by Dave Corriveau in Little Rock’s Union Station, and Buster’s restaurant, opened next door in 1978 by Buster Corley. (See Little Rock's Original Fern Bar: How Buster’s Birthed Dave & Buster’s)

“Everything’s new. New and improved,” Beyer said, going on to cite “chef-crafted food,” “the best of the best games” and “adult snow cones.”

The company’s efforts, what Beyer called a “new brand,” appear to be reflected in its first-quarter 2016 earnings report, released on Tuesday: a revenue increase of 17.7 percent to $262 million with income rising 59.5 percent to $31.2 million, or 72 cents per share. The results prompted D&B to raise its full-year financial outlook.

Beyer shared some more numbers with us: a 360-degree sports bar; 44 HD TVs; two 100-inch projection screens; “every single sports package, hockey, basketball, football, baseball. We even carry all-day UFC fights. And we do that intentionally because we want to make sure that we are the destination for all adults wanting to go out and unwind.”

Little Rock’s 30,000-SF D&B, which can accommodate 1,500 people, employs 240 “of the greatest people in Arkansas,” an ebullient Beyer said. “We interviewed over 3,300 people,” he said, calling the response to Dave & Buster’s call for workers “absolutely phenomenal.”

Related: Dave & Buster's To Open First Little Rock Location June 13