Bob Evans was founded in 1948 in in Rio Grande, Ohio. Bob originally began making sausage for his 12 stool diner. Customers told him that he had the best sausage ever. However, demand was greater than he could supply. Bob made a deal with his cousin Tim Evans, who ran a packing plant, to follow his recipe, then pack and ship the sausage.
Evans began selling his sausage all across Ohio, mainly to grocery stores. Restaurants weren’t interested, telling Evans that customers didn’t care for and wouldn’t pay for high-quality sausage. Evans didn’t agree and opened his own restaurant.
In 1963, the company went public as Bob Evans Farms. In 1964, a Michigan restaurant was opened, the first location outside Ohio.
In 1971, Bob’s cousin Dan Evans becomes President and CEO.
In 1983, the 100th restaurant is opened.
In 1987, the company acquired Owens Country Sausage.
In 2002, the company opens its 500th restaurant.
Bob Evans dies of pneumonia in 2007.
In September of 2017, Bob Evans restaurants were acquired by Post Holdings for $1.5 billion. The sale was completed in January of 2018, thus removing Bob Evans from the NASDAQ. The CEO firmly stated that no restaurant locations would close because of the sale.
Bob Evans currently operates more than 600 locations in 24 states. Annual revenue in 2012 was $1.669 billion. The company employs more than 46,000 persons. Headquarters are still located in New Albany, Ohio.