The Italian-American restaurant chain is the latest victim of the coronavirus pandemic after Monsoon Accessorize and Quiz also announced major restructures. Retail and hospitality businesses have struggled during the crisis, with the Government demanding that they close for the lockdown from March 23. The Restaurant Group, owner of Frankie & Benny’s, said another 85 sites were at risk, depending on rent cuts and renegotiating leases.
The company said they would use a company voluntary arrangement, which is a legal agreement for companies to let them to restructure their business.
Andy Hornby, chief executive of the Restaurant Group, said: “The issues facing our sector are well documented and we have already taken decisive action to improve our liquidity, reduce our cost base and downsize our operations.
“The proposed CVA will deliver an appropriately-sized estate for our leisure business to ensure we are well-positioned despite the very challenging market conditions facing the casual dining sector.
“I would like to wholeheartedly thank all of my TRG colleagues for their continued understanding and extraordinary commitment during this unprecedented period.”
Waitress at the Frankie and Benny’s in Wrexham, Anna Morris, said: “I was devastated when I heard our branch was closing.
“I’ve worked at the Eagles Meadow branch since it opened in 2008, I was 17 – I’d been there almost 12 years
“We were told a few days ago that some restaurants were permanently closing, and that we would get another email confirming whether the branch we worked for would be one of them.”
In an announcement on March 23, Frankie and Benny’s said: “Things have moved incredibly fast in the last week – it’s been nothing short of a rollercoaster.
“A few days ago we made the announcement to convert some of our locations to delivery-only restaurants.
“Today we have made the decision to temporarily cease the delivery operations too. At this time, staying in is crucial to containing the spread of the coronavirus.
“So with safety of teams & guests in mind, we want to make sure that everyone can follow the advice of social distancing and stay home.”
Monsoon Accessorize has announced 545 job losses and the closure of 35 shops.
Its owners have said the business has been unable to withstand the financial impact of having to close all of its stores for almost three months.
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This comes as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has warned the UK faces a bigger recession than any other country in the develop world.
They forecast that GDP will collapse 11.5 percent, which is more than Spain, France and Italy.
Pubs and restaurants with gardens are set to welcome clients again from July 4.
Fast food chains are likely to be rather different after the pandemic with more hand sanitiser, employee hand washing and some may even ask customers to wear masks inside.
It is also expected that ordering kiosks and contactless payment could become more prevalent.
Published at Wed, 10 Jun 2020 18:59:00 +0000