Finances and Deals


  • An image of a building with "Rubio's Coastal Grill" on the outside.
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    Permission granted by Rubio's Coastal Grill
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    What drove Rubio’s to declare bankruptcy again

    Despite completing a restructuring in 2020, the chain struggled to overcome macroeconomic headwinds that led to three years of negative EBITDA. 

    By June 12, 2024
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    Brandon Bell via Getty Images
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    Deep Dive

    How a bad real estate deal sunk Red Lobster

    Trouble began in 2014 when the chain’s owner sold its real estate in a sale-leaseback, putting the seafood brand on the hook for millions in rent.

    By Updated June 10, 2024
  • An image of a building with "Rubio's Coastal Grill" on the outside.
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    Permission granted by Rubio's Coastal Grill
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    Rubio’s files for bankruptcy protection

    The company, which has been under financial pressures due to diminishing traffic and rising costs, said a Chapter 11 filing is part of facilitating a sale. 

    By Updated June 5, 2024
  • Various burgers, chicken tenders, fries and onion rings on a gray table.
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    Courtesy of BurgerFi
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    BurgerFi seeks strategic alternatives

    The company will consider all options as it continues to face liquidity challenges, sales growth problems and net losses. 

    By May 31, 2024
  • An image of Red Loster sign on the outside of a restaurant
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    Justin Sullivan via Getty Images
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    It’s more than shrimp: What led to Red Lobster’s bankruptcy

    A cash shortage, traffic declines and pressure from equity sponsor Thai Union to become its sole shrimp supplier led to high costs — compounding losses induced by the ill-fated Ultimate Endless Shrimp promo. 

    By May 21, 2024
  • A sign with a lobster on it that says "This location is closed."
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    Justin Sullivan via Getty Images
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    Red Lobster declares bankruptcy

    The chain’s bankruptcy is the culmination of months of financial woes, which included significant losses, trouble paying its bills on time and a planned divestment by its minority owner. 

    By May 20, 2024
  • An image of a restaurant with beige paint and a stone facade with "Red Lobster" signage
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    Justin Sullivan via Getty Images
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    Red Lobster closes 48 locations, auctions off contents

    The chain, which has had trouble paying its bills on time, may be considering bankruptcy as its minority owner divests from it. 

    By May 14, 2024
  • An exterior shot of Twin Peaks restaurant
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    Permission granted by Fat Brands/Twin Peaks
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    Fat Brands files for Twin Peaks IPO

    Fat plans to use the proceeds of an IPO to deleverage its balance sheet, which includes over $1 billion in debt taken on in a flurry of recent acquisitions. 

    By May 14, 2024
  • An image of a Johnny Rockets counter.
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    Permission granted by Fat Brands
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    Feds indict Andrew Wiederhorn, Fat Brands in $47M loan scheme

    Wiederhorn was slapped with a litany of charges including tax evasion, wire fraud and possession of a firearm as a convicted felon.

    By May 10, 2024
  • A hand dips a chicken tender into a dipping sauce.
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    Courtesy of Sticky's
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    Chicken tender chain Sticky’s Finger Joint files for Chapter 11

    Low foot traffic in Manhattan, exacerbated by high prices for chicken and potatoes, left 12-unit Sticky’s in a weak position.

    By April 26, 2024
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    Permission granted by Tijuana Flats
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    Tijuana Flats files for Chapter 11, gains new owners

    The fast casual chain also closed 11 restaurants after undergoing a unit-by-unit analysis of financial performance, occupancy costs and market conditions. 

    By April 19, 2024
  • An image of Red Loster sign on the outside of a restaurant
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    Justin Sullivan via Getty Images
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    Why Red Lobster could be headed toward bankruptcy

    The chain only paid a quarter of its bills on time in February and over half were 61 to 90 days late, according to data from Creditsafe.

    By April 19, 2024
  • An image of TGI Fridays signage with red and white stripes
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    Bruce Bennett via Getty Images
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    4 things to know about TGI Fridays’ acquisition by Hostmore

    The chain’s biggest franchisee has been reducing expenses since 2022, which should help the combined company start on stronger financial footing in the U.K.’s public market.

    By April 18, 2024
  • An image of TGI Fridays signage with red and white stripes
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    Bruce Bennett via Getty Images
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    TGI Fridays enters $220M agreement to combine with UK franchisee

    The deal with Hostmore, worth over $220 million, will lead to TGI Fridays trading on the London Stock Exchange under “TGIF” symbol. 

    By April 16, 2024
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    Halfpoint via Getty Images
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    Q&A

    Ask an expert: How can brands protect struggling franchisees from bankruptcy?

    A bad franchisee can do “irreparable harm” to its parent chain, but early intervention can help avoid sales shortfalls and covenant defaults, said Chris Desiderio of Nixon Peabody.

    By April 15, 2024
  • Large squares containing "ASAP" and "Pick Up Orders"
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    Permission granted by Waitr Holdings
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    ASAP goes bust

    ASAP, once known as Waitr, ceased its operations over the last few weeks and let go of its executives, prior to filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy on Tuesday.

    By Updated April 2, 2024
  • A picture of a Chipotle with a pickup lane.
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    Courtesy of Chipotle
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    Fast casuals outperform QSRs as pricing erodes fast food’s low-income advantage

    Chains like Chipotle and Wingstop exceeded analyst expectations for sales and EBITDA last quarter, while QSR giants lagged, per a TD Cowen report.

    By April 1, 2024
  • An image of the interior of a Five Iron Golf containing astro turf and seating
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    Courtesy of Five Iron Golf
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    Danny Meyer’s PE firm invests $20M in Five Iron Golf

    Enlightened Hospitality Investments’ minority investment will help the golf-simulator chain accelerate growth and increase its offerings. 

    By March 12, 2024
  • A still from Chipotle's promotional automated makeline shows corn bouncing in a bowl.
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    Retrieved from Chipotle on October 03, 2023
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    Chipotle doubles tech venture fund spending to $100M

    The chain’s second round of $50 million for its Cultivate Next fund comes less than two years after the project was announced, and as Chipotle tests equipment developed by partner companies.

    By Feb. 28, 2024
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    iStock/Jacob Wackerhausen

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    Sponsored by Instant Financial

    The cost of cash for restaurants

    Reduce your cash tips costs by moving to an electronic employee tips solution, with no fees.

    Feb. 26, 2024
  • An image of a next gen Dunkin' in Woodstock, Georgia.
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    Courtesy of Dunkin'
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    Roark rumored to be seeking Inspire Brands IPO

    With a potential valuation of $20 billion, an IPO for the parent company of Dunkin’ and Arby’s would be one of the biggest in the restaurant industry in over 20 years. 

    By Feb. 15, 2024
  • A Boston Market sign is shown.
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    Kate Tornone/Restaurant Dive
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    Boston Market owner Jay Pandya files for bankruptcy a second time

    Pandya originally filed for bankruptcy in December, but that case was dismissed after he failed to respond to court orders for more information. 

    By Feb. 14, 2024
  • Popeyes signage
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    Courtesy of Popeyes
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    17-unit Popeyes franchisee files for bankruptcy

    RRG said losses at three of its units made it impossible to sustain timely lease payments at its remaining stores, pushing the operator to seek Chapter 11 protections.

    By Feb. 6, 2024
  • A red stop-work order is taped to a Boston Market door.
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    Kate Tornone/Restaurant Dive
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    US Foods wins $11.9M suit against Boston Market by default

    A federal judge found Boston Market engaged in bad faith and intentionally avoided engaging with process servers in a lawsuit over unpaid bills.

    By Feb. 1, 2024
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    Michael Thomas via Getty Images
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    Deep Dive

    Cost pressures may drive restaurant franchisee bankruptcies in 2024

    Issues with margins or cash flow due to supply shocks, labor shortages and other disruptions can push operators into covenant default over their debts, experts said.

    By Jan. 30, 2024