Rise & Dine Restaurants Inc. announced plans to change its name to Sunny Street Café as the franchise expands into Canada.

“As we prepare for our next stage of development, we want to ensure that our brand is well-positioned for long-term growth,” says Joe Deavenport, COO of Rise & Dine Restaurants. “Our consumer research tells us that Rise & Dine generally connotes breakfast to most people. This means our brand must communicate clearly to consumers that our concept specializes in lunch just as much as breakfast.”

The chain has plans to open three to four restaurants in Canada by the first quarter of 2010, and 15 to 20 restaurants by 2012. The Ontario province will be the chain’s initial area of focus.

“We are known for our outstanding breakfast, and we want our new customers to know that we offer an extensive lunch menu with plenty of variety,” Deavenport says. “We believe Sunny Street Café and our tagline, ‘A Bright Spot for Breakfast and Lunch,’ will resonate well with our diverse target audience and capture the essence of our brand.”

The transition to Sunny Street Café will occur gradually, allowing time for customers to understand the change. The new Web site, www.sunnystreetcafe.com, is live. The full brand conversion will take place during the first half of 2010. All new restaurants in the U.S. and Canada will open with the new Sunny Street Café name.

“Sunny Street Café has tremendous growth potential in Canada,” Deavenport says. “The breakfast-lunch segment in Canada is under-served, the economy is stable, and small business financing is not as challenging to access as it is in the U.S. at this time.”