Buffets LLC, the owner of Hometown Buffet, Fire Mountain, and several other restaurant chains has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. This is the third business of its type that has filed for bankruptcy protection in less than a decade.
Buffets LLC Files for Bankruptcy
Buffets LLC — the owner of numerous all-you-can-eat brands— filed for protection from its creditors in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Western District of Texas on March 7, 2015. The company’s brands include: Country Buffet, HomeTown Buffet, Ryan’s, Ryan’s Family Steakhouse, Granny’s, Tahoe Joe’s, Tahoe Joe’s Famous Steakhouse, Soup ‘N Salad Unlimited, Roadhouse Grill, J.J. North’s Grand Buffet and Ovation Brands. The business is seeking protection because of what it calls disappointing revenue and a crushing lawsuit that according to the court filing, it “apparently overlooked.”
According to court documents, the business has been forced to close 166 restaurants, more than half of the company’s locations, across the nation over the past few weeks, and let go of more than 6,000 employees.
This is not the company’s first Chapter 11. In fact it’s the company’s third, thus allowing it the dubious distinction of “Chapter 33.”
The company filed previously in 2008 and 2012. In both those cases, the company closed locations in an effort to restructure and regain funds.
The company also discovered that “prior management” had “apparently overlooked” a 2014 lawsuit that was filed as the result of a 2010 incident. Last October, when the company’s lawyers failed to file a timely response to the suit, a judge created an $11.4 million judgment against the company.
The company owes $46.2 million in loans secured by all of its assets and guaranteed by its new owners.
Working with a Bankruptcy Attorney
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