Twin Peaks Restaurants has awarded its second largest franchise commitment. GT Hospitality Restaurant, LLC, signed an agreement to expand into Southern Virginia, Kentucky and Ohio with 16 stores over the next seven years. Twin Peaks, owned by Front Burner Restaurants LP, opened locations in Chicago and Las Vegas last month and will open its 32nd restaurant in Kansas this month. The chain has 31 locations in 15 states and expects to have 50 restaurants by the end of the calendar year...Nordstrom will open a 33,000 s/f Nordstrom Rack store at Shelbyville Road Plaza in Louisville, KY, and a 35,000 s/f store at the Shoppes at University Town Center in Sarasota-Bradenton in Florida. The retailer currently operates 9 full-line stores and 8 Rack stores in Florida...Francesca's Holdings Corp. plans to open 80 stores in fiscal year 2013...Rue21 opened its 900th store last month in Missouri. Rue21 has opened more than 500 stores in the last 5 years, and expects to open another 125 stores in 2013. It expects to open its 1,000th store in the fourth quarter. The retailer’s plan is to grow to more than 1,700 US stores...Health club chain Crunch signed a deal with Fitness Holdings LLC & RLB Holdings to open an additional 42 clubs across New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. Crunch has 61 gyms worldwide...Panda Express will open 100 more units this year. The chain has 1,600 units currently...New York & Company will open 8 to 12 outlet stores, remodel 10 to 15 existing locations, and close between 30 and 36 stores, ending the year with between 491 and 501 stores...Smoothie King Franchises will open 70 franchise and 30 corporate US locations in 2013...E&I Holdings, Inc., franchisor of The Egg & I Restaurants, has opened its 73rd and 74th restaurants, in Portland, ME and Dallas, TX continuing its rapid US expansion. The company currently has 24 new restaurants under development and has commitments for the development of 92 restaurants over the next few years...Five Below expects to open 60 stores this year, including new markets in Texas, as well as adding units in existing markets...Signet Jewelers Ltd., parent of Kay Jewelers and Jared, anticipates opening 65 to 75 new US stores for the year...Upscale ice cream emporium Sloan’s has launched a national franchising program, targeting Florida, the Carolinas, Georgia, New York, New England and California. Sloan’s anticipates a total of approximately 200 US franchise locations...The Bon-Ton Stores Inc.’s 29,000 s/f Boston Store Clearance Center, its first-ever standalone clearance store, opened this month in Wisconsin. Bon-Ton has 271 department stores, including 11 furniture galleries, in 24 states under the Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers brand names...Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th opened a 28,000 s/f store is in Phoenix Premium Outlets, Chandler, AZ...Shoe Carnival expects to open 30 to 35 new stores, relocate 7 stores and close 5 to 7 stores in 2013...Leslie’s Poolmart opened 15 Leslie’s Swimming Pool Supplies stores across 10 states this month, part of a plan to open 48 new stores this spring...Aaron's plans to open 125 stores this year. The rent-to-own company has more than 2,075 stores...Polaroid opened its first-ever retail store, Polaroid Fotobar, a 2,000 s/f store where customers can upload and print digital images, in Delray Beach, Fl. Nine additional US locations are scheduled to open by the end of the year...Samsung Electronics and Best Buy Co. have entered into a partnership to install Samsung in-store shops in more than 1,400 Best Buy and Best Buy Mobile stores across the US beginning this month. The shops will feature Samsung’s full range of mobile products including smartphones, tablets, laptops, connected cameras and accessories...7-Eleven has acquired 46 Hickory Point and Palms Stores in the Carolinas from CB Mart...Family Dollar will open 500 new stores in 2013 and close 30 to 50...Build-A-Bear Workshop will open 20 to 25 stores in 2013, all under the newly introduced store design. The retailer opened six stores under the new design in fall 2012, and the success of the stores prompted an escalated rollout...Sony launched a new Sony Store in California, and plans to reopen three other concept stores in Miami, San Diego and Orlando. Sony also plans to create freestanding “Sony Galleries” in major shopping centers. The first opened in San Diego at Westfield UTC Mall.