finance

Gourmet Burger Kitchen to axe hundreds of jobs



Restaurant chain Gourmet Burger Kitchen (GBK) is set to close 26 restaurants and axe more then 360 jobs.

The major restructuring effort has been made following a rescue deal which sees GBK bought by Boparan Restaurant Group. Boparand also recently bought Carluccio’s out of insolvency.

GBK was sold in a pre-pack administration deal, after working with big four accountancy firm Deloitte.

The deal will save 35 sites and 669 jobs from its original portfolio of 61 sites and 1,031 employees.

GBK has two branches in Scotland, in Edinburgh and Glasgow. It is still not known which branches will be closed.

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.”

Before the pandemic GBK was starting to see improvements in its trading last year after it carried out a major restructuring process in 2018. The restructure led to a number of sites being closed.

The burger chain was previously owned by South African group Famous Brands but it slid into administration after coronavirus impacted its liquidity and its potential to be sold as a solvent business.

The deal 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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