Ranjit Singh Boparan buys Gourmet Burger Kitchen in rescue deal

Gourmet Burger Kitchen has been bought out of administration by the food industry tycoon Ranjit Singh Boparan in a deal that will save more than 660 jobs.



a sign hanging off the side of a building: Photograph: Maureen McLean/REX/Shutterstock


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Maureen McLean/REX/Shutterstock

Boparan, who bought Carluccio’s in May, has bought 35 of the burger restaurant’s sites. However, under the pre-pack administration deal, 26 other sites will close, with the loss of 362 jobs.

The burger chain, which was owned by the South African company Famous Brands, which also owns Wimpy in the UK, was put on the market as it struggled amid the pandemic and high street lockdown.

But Gourmet Burger Kitchen has been in difficulties since a restructuring deal with landlords in 2018 under which it agreed to close up to 17 sites after the casual dining market became oversaturated.

Gavin Maher, a partner at Deloitte who was appointed joint administrator on Wednesday, said: “The broader challenges facing ‘bricks and mortar’ operators, combined with the effect of the lockdown, resulted in a deterioration in financial performance and a material funding requirement.

“We have been working closely with the management team under very difficult market conditions to try and find a funding solution, and I am glad to be able to announce the rescue of this well-loved brand together with a large proportion of the sites and workforce. However, it’s clearly disappointing that a number of sites have had to close resulting in today’s redundancies.”



a sign hanging off the side of a building: A Gourmet Burger Kitchen restaurant in Bracknell.


© Photograph: Maureen McLean/REX/Shutterstock
A Gourmet Burger Kitchen restaurant in Bracknell.

Labelled the “chicken king” as he is the co-owner and founder of 2 Sisters Food Group, which supplies about a third of the chicken on UK supermarket shelves, Boparan’s business interests includes turkey producer Bernard Matthews, the upmarket London restaurant The Cinnamon Club restaurant, as well as the Giraffe and Ed’s Easy Diner chains.

Satnam Leihal, the managing director of Boparan Restaurant Group, said: “This latest acquisition is in line with our strategy to grow our restaurant group with quality brands. Whilst it is an extremely challenging time for the sector, we believe quality hospitality businesses will recover in the long term as people return to eating out.”

Boparan is extending his empire as restaurants and pubs face intense financial pressure during the coronavirus crisis.

UK operators were forced to close for several months in March and continue to suffer from local lockdowns in some parts of the country, as well as from low visitor numbers on high streets, retail parks and shopping centres in general.

With profits under pressure, Pizza Hut, Pizza Express, Azzurri Group, which ownsAsk Italian and Zizzi, and the Casual Dining Group, which owns Bella Italia, Café Rouge and Las Iguanas, have all closed outlets, putting thousands of jobs at risk.

Gourmet Burger Kitchen sites to close under the deal

Angel, London

Aylesbury

Baker Street, London

Berner Street, London

Brunswick Centre, London

Canterbury

Cardiff Library

Chichester

Clink Street

, London

Covent Garden, London

Edinburgh

Glasgow

(closed before administrators were appointed)

Maidstone

Nottingham

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Ranjit Singh Boparan buys Gourmet Burger Kitchen in rescue deal | Business

Gourmet Burger Kitchen has been bought out of administration by the food industry tycoon Ranjit Singh Boparan in a deal that will save more than 660 jobs.

Boparan, who bought Carluccio’s in May, has bought 35 of the burger restaurant’s sites. However, under the pre-pack administration deal, 26 other sites will close, with the loss of 362 jobs.

The burger chain, which was owned by the South African company Famous Brands, which also owns Wimpy in the UK, was put on the market as it struggled amid the pandemic and high street lockdown.

But Gourmet Burger Kitchen has been in difficulties since a restructuring deal with landlords in 2018 under which it agreed to close up to 17 sites after the casual dining market became oversaturated.

Gavin Maher, a partner at Deloitte who was appointed joint administrator on Wednesday, said: “The broader challenges facing ‘bricks and mortar’ operators, combined with the effect of the lockdown, resulted in a deterioration in financial performance and a material funding requirement.

“We have been working closely with the management team under very difficult market conditions to try and find a funding solution, and I am glad to be able to announce the rescue of this well-loved brand together with a large proportion of the sites and workforce. However, it’s clearly disappointing that a number of sites have had to close resulting in today’s redundancies.”

Labelled the “chicken king” as he is the co-owner and founder of 2 Sisters Food Group, which supplies about a third of the chicken on UK supermarket shelves, Boparan’s business interests includes turkey producer Bernard Matthews, the upmarket London restaurant The Cinnamon Club restaurant, as well as the Giraffe and Ed’s Easy Diner chains.

Satnam Leihal, the managing director of Boparan Restaurant Group, said: “This latest acquisition is in line with our strategy to grow our restaurant group with quality brands. Whilst it is an extremely challenging time for the sector, we believe quality hospitality businesses will recover in the long term as people return to eating out.”

Boparan is extending his empire as restaurants and pubs face intense financial pressure during the coronavirus crisis.

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UK operators were forced to close for several months in March and continue to suffer from local lockdowns in some parts of the country, as well as from low visitor numbers on high streets, retail parks and shopping centres in general.

With profits under pressure, Pizza Hut, Pizza Express, Azzurri Group, which ownsAsk Italian and Zizzi, and the Casual Dining Group, which owns Bella Italia, Café Rouge and Las Iguanas, have all closed outlets, putting thousands of jobs at risk.

Gourmet Burger Kitchen sites to close under the deal

Angel, London
Aylesbury
Baker Street, London
Berner Street, London
Brunswick Centre, London
Canterbury
Cardiff Library
Chichester
Clink Street
, London
Covent Garden, London
Edinburgh
Glasgow
(closed before administrators were appointed)
Maidstone
Nottingham
Richmond
, London

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Gourmet Burger Kitchen to axe 362 jobs and 26 restaurants despite rescue sale

Gourmet Burger Kitchen (GBK) is to close 26 restaurants and axe 362 roles despite being saved from administration.

The chain has been bought in a rescue deal by Boparan Restaurant Group, which also snapped Carluccio’s out of insolvency earlier in the pandemic.



GBK said it had started to see improvements in trading last year after a major restructuring process in 2018, which saw it shut a raft of sites.

However, the company, which had been owned by South African group Famous Brands, said it slid into administration after the virus impacted upon its liquidity and potential to be sold as a solvent business.

The sale will secure the future of 35 GBK restaurants (Rick Findler/PA)
The sale will secure the future of 35 GBK restaurants (Rick Findler/PA)

The group has now been sold in a pre-pack administration deal after working with insolvency specialists at Deloitte.

It said the move will save 35 sites and 669 jobs from its original network of 61 restaurants and 1,031 employees.

Gavin Maher, joint administrator at Deloitte, said: “As with a number of dining businesses, the broader challenges facing ‘bricks and mortar’ operators, combined with the effect of the lockdown, resulted in a deterioration in financial performance and a material funding requirement.

“We have been working closely with the management team under very difficult market conditions to try and find a funding solution and I am glad to be able to announce the rescue of this well-loved brand together with a large proportion of the sites and workforce.

“However, it’s clearly disappointing that a number of sites have had to close resulting in today’s redundancies.

“We would like to thank all of those involved in the transaction, including our legal advisers, DLA Piper, and wish the management team, workforce and the new owners, Boparan Restaurant Group, every success in now taking the business forward.”

It is the latest expansion in dining for Boparan, which is owned by “Chicken King” Ranjit Boparan and also owns the chains Giraffe and Ed’s Easy Diner.

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Gourmet Burger Kitchen rescued by Giraffe owner



a person that is eating some food


© Getty Images


Restaurant chain Gourmet Burger Kitchen has been bought out of administration by Boparan Restaurant Group.

The deal includes 35 sites and 669 jobs. However, 26 restaurants and 362 jobs will be lost.

Boparan owns the Giraffe chain and is owned by Ranjit Boparan, who founded 2 Sisters chicken processing company.

GBK, which has had several owners, was most recently owned by South Africa-based Famous Brands.

It was sold out of administration by accountancy firm Deloitte.

“As with a number of dining businesses, the broader challenges facing ‘bricks and mortar’ operators, combined with the effect of the lockdown, resulted in a deterioration in financial performance and a material funding requirement,” Gavin Maher, Joint Administrator at Deloitte, said.



a store in a brick building


© Getty Images


“We have been working closely with the management team under very difficult market conditions to try and find a funding solution and I am glad to be able to announce the rescue of this well-loved brand together with a large proportion of the sites and workforce.

“However, it’s clearly disappointing that a number of sites have had to close resulting in today’s redundancies.”

The company has been in trouble since November 2018 when it entered a Company Voluntary Arrangement.

Since then, the coronavirus lockdown has hit sales, Deloitte said.

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Basin Burger House closes after 8 years


Basin Burger House has closed its doors after eight years, as evidenced by the for-sale sign out front. The popular burger and brunch spot on Colorado Avenue was a gathering place for trivia nights and young professionals. The Green Chili Burger was featured in Texas Monthly’s “The 50 Greatest Burgers in Texas” in 2016.

The partners took an empty 1930s-era house, remodeled and expanded it to include a kitchen and patio, according to previous article in the Reporter-Telegram. The interior was decorated with photos of native Midlanders, including oilman H.L. Brown and former first lady Laura Bush.


A temporary closing notice was posted March 24 on the restaurant’s Facebook page.


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San Antonio natives have green light to open new burger and beer garden on East Side

While the empty lot at 2014 WW White Road may not look like much now, two San Antonio natives are hoping to transform it into a new restaurant and outdoor space to bring food, fun and family together.

Owners J.R. Vega and Kevin Koenen hope to open their new restaurant Buckets Burger and Beer Garden next month. The open-space restaurant will include cornhole, volleyball and a playground for the kids — a place where people can hang out, have dinner and feel safe during the pandemic.

READ ALSO: Photos show Jollibee in San Antonio is almost ready

“It’s going to be the whole works,” Vega said. “We want to provide a place where people can be safe and happy … when people leave, we want them to be smiling and we hope this can be like a home away from home.”

Buckets will eventually take up 6-acres of land and will include food and drink specials served in — you guessed it — buckets.

The pair, who have been friends since kindergarten, have always known they wanted to go into business together. Separately, the two have owned a number of bars and restaurants in the San Antonio area. When Koenen saw the space on WW White available to lease, the two jumped on the opportunity. Within a week, they conceptualized their new venture and signed the lease on the 6-acre plot.

READ ALSO: Popular San Antonio food truck moving into restaurant at the Pearl food hall

“There just aren’t a ton of things to do in that area of town and people are looking for things to do to get out and be together but also be safe with COVID-19, so this was perfect,” Koenen said.

While its still in the infant stages, Vega and Koenen hope to open Buckets’ dining room and patio in mid-October, with the full concept finished by the spring. They said don’t want to create problems by rushing to open the full restaurant and are taking their time to make sure everything is right before fully opening.

Patron can expect classics like beer-can chicken, BBQ, big desserts and of course lots and lots of burgers. Vega said they are even throwing around the idea of creating a 12-pound burger challenge.

“We want our menu to be fun and creative,” Vega said. “It is stuff that no one really offers, so we want to take it and run.”

Taylor Pettaway is a breaking news and general assignment reporter for MySA.com | [email protected] | @TaylorPettaway

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Burger King reveals restaurant redesign with suspended kitchen and exterior to-go lockers

Burgers are making their way to the future.

The world is changing and, apparently, so is Burger King. The restaurant chain recently unveiled new designs for its locations that will fulfill “changing guest demand,” according to the company.

The new restaurant designs will reportedly provide guests with multiple ordering and delivery modes, depending on their needs or wants. (Burger King)

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In a press release shared with Fox News, Burger King confirmed that the new designs were created by an in-house design team with Restaurant Brands International (Burger King’s parent company). The designs were also created with input from the technology, operations and food innovation teams.

The new restaurants are set to be built in Miami, Latin America and the Caribbean in 2021.

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The revamped designs will provide guests with multiple ordering and delivery modes, depending on their needs or wants. The new restaurants will also have a physical footprint that’s 60% smaller than traditional Burger King restaurants, achieved by having the kitchen and the dining room suspended over the drive-thru lanes.

A conveyer belt system will deliver food from the kitchen to the drive-thru.

A conveyer belt system will reportedly deliver food from the kitchen to the drive-thru. (Burger King)

For guests placing online and delivery orders, coded lockers will be placed on the exterior of the restaurant. Food will be placed directly into these lockers from the kitchen.

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“In March our in-house design and tech team accelerated new restaurant design plans and pushed the limits of what a Burger King restaurant could be,” said Josh Kobza, chief operating officer for Restaurant Brands International. “We took into consideration how consumer behaviors are changing and our guests will want to interact with our restaurants. The result is a new design concept that is attractive to guests and will allow our franchisees to maximize their return.”

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