Recently, Last Call Guarantor LLC, parent company of the national Fox & Hound restaurant chain, announced that it had filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection. According to The Wall Street Journal, the company's reorganization plan calls for closing a portion of its restaurant locations and engaging in negotiations with creditors to reduce its remaining debt load.
Last Call Guarantor becomes insolvent after underperforming
In its bankruptcy filings, the company claimed assets of only between $10 million and $50 million, but its liabilities ranged from $100 million to $500 million. Last Call cited a decline in the restaurant industry as sales dropped and labor costs rose for its 80 restaurants and 4,700 employees nationwide.
The company stated in court documents that this is the second time the owner of these chain restaurants has sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. In 2013, the ownership group led by private equity funds Steel Partners LLC and Newcastle Partners LP sold the restaurant chains to Cerberus Business Finance after it reported only $14.5 million in assets and $91.5 million in debt. At the time, the owners claimed consumers were spending less on dining out due to the economic downturn in the U.S.
Last Call Guarantor's reorganization plan
Its bankruptcy plan calls for the closing of at least 18 underperforming restaurant locations, with more possibly on the way in the near future. Last Call also plans to negotiate with debtors to cut its debt load, but there are no active agreements in place. The company also may liquidate a portion of its remaining assets.
The significance of the Last Call Guarantor filing
Fox & Hound, Last Call's largest asset, is just the latest among several top national chain restaurants to seek Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection since 2015. According to Kansas.com, Logan's Roadhouse, Johnny Carino's and several other notable chains filed for bankruptcy protection due to the restaurant recession last year.