Fresh Acquisitions, which operates Furr’s Fresh Buffet, and several of its affiliates, including Buffets LLC and its subsidiaries, which operate Ryan’s, Old Country Buffet, Tahoe Joe’s Famous Steakhouse and Hometown Buffet, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection to strengthen operations and recapitalize their businesses. The companies will have access to additional liquidity through a post-petition debtor in-possession loan being extended by VitaNova Brands.
B. Riley Advisory Services is serving as chief restructuring officer and financial advisor and Gray Reed is acting as legal counsel for the companies.
“As with almost every one of our peers, buffet restaurants took the brunt of the loss of sales during the pandemic and as such, the path to success requires hard choices to be made, including the rationalization of our overall footprint,” Jason Kemp, co-founder and CEO of VitaNova Brands, said. “The precipitous decline in sales at the restaurants resulting from occupancy restrictions and the banning of family-style buffet dining forced the companies to take extraordinary steps, including the closing of multiple locations.”
The companies expect to continue operating in the normal course during their Chapter 11 cases and believe a number of the brands, including Furr’s Buffet and Tahoe Joe’s, can take advantage of the expected post-COVID-19 recovery.
“We are looking forward to emerging from bankruptcy as a stronger operator with a focus on the Tahoe Joe’s and Furr’s AYCE Marketplace banners. These great brands serving great food will create a platform for future growth,” Kemp said.
The cases are pending in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division.
VitaNova Brands is a multi-concept operator of independent restaurant brands, based in San Antonio, Texas.