Restaurant chains were set to suffer major damages since the start of the pandemic, and Pizza Hut is the latest chain to announce a ripple of permanent closures. Even with dining room reopening in some parts of the country, it’s still nearly impossible for casual-dining restaurants to generate a profit at reduced dine-in capacity. As a ensue, many chains have permanently closed some stores, and some labels have decided to throw in the towel altogether. McDonald’s, Dunkin’, and Starbucks are among the chains that have cumulatively closed over 1500 eateries for good. Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
As soon as the pandemic smash, restaurant-industry experts knew that many eateries wouldn’t make it through. On April 1, UBS predicted that one in five eateries may close as a result of the pandemic.
While independent eateries ought to have hit much harder than many chains, chains aren’t immune. Chains often rely on independent owner-operators to run restaurants, and these franchises often don’t have the same robust financial resources of the labels they represent.
Even though much of America has opened up, most venues have implemented social-distancing guidelines that make it impossible for eateries to generate a profit even if they reopen dining rooms. Reopening isn’t the fiscal cure-all some hoped it “wouldve been”, and a recent Yelp report found that practically 16,000 restaurants have already permanently closed since the pandemic began.
Some chains have already filed for bankruptcy shield or closed all restaurants. Others are taking a slower, quieter, or more quantified approach to closures. Nonetheless, this is likely merely the beginning of a large ripple of closures for casual-dining notions, which are much less likely to make it through the pandemic unscathed than delivery-oriented restaurants.
Here’s a roll of chain-restaurant closures since the pandemic started.
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TGI Fridays: as many as 20% of the chain’s 386 eateries Hollis Johnson/ Business Insider
On May 26, TGI Fridays CEO Ray Blanchette told Bloomberg that the chain could permanently close up to 20% of its 386 restaurants.
As restaurants reopen with limited dine-in capacity, TGI Fridays is experimenting with outdoor tent seating.
Steak ‘n Shake: 51 restaurants AP
Steak ‘n Shake has been participating in the slip for a very long time, and numerous attempts to reinvent the brand and retaking patrons haven’t quite succeeded. So it was little surprise when the chain’s quarterly report, which came out in early May, revealed that the chain would close 51 more eateries.
Sweet Tomatoes/Souplantation: all 97 eateries Photo by Mel Melcon/ Los Angeles Times via Getty Images
The pandemic has been especially bad news for buffet restaurants. Garden Fresh, the parent company of Souplantation and Sweet Tomatoes, filed for insolvency in early May. It became the first( and, still further, the only) major buffet chain to announce it would close all restaurants permanently because of the pandemic’s impact on business.
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