The CEO of Famous Dave's is leaving the company after about 16 months at the helm.
The company provided no reason for the surprising departure of chief executive John Gilbert, but investors seemed to like the news. The company's stock rose about 14 percent after the announcement was made Monday morning.
Ed Rensi, a board member and one-time McDonald's executive, will take over for now as interim CEO, the Minneapolis-based company said.
Gilbert was appointed chief executive in October 2012. He had been president of the Vermont Teddy Bear Co., an online retailer and before that held leadership roles at TJX companies, Dunkin' Donuts and Kentucky Fried Chicken.
Gilbert's departure was not expected, Famous Dave's board chairman Dean Riesen said.
"John has his reasons. We did not want him to leave. I expected John to be here for at least another five years."
Rensi is "eminently qualified" to run the company as interim chief executive, Riesen added.
The company also gave a preview of its fourth quarter and annual results, which will be announced Wednesday. Revenue for the year was essentially flat at $155 million.
Famous Dave's has 54 company-owned and 142 franchised restaurants in 34 states, Puerto Rico and Canada.