The Naked Chef’s UK restaurants at risk of closing

Posted by Christi Nortier on 21 May 2019

Jamie Oliver’s restaurants in the UK may be forced to close if financial administrators, who are now in control of the chains, decide to shut the doors.

About 25 restaurants are at risk, all of them in the UK. They include Jamie’s Italian, Barbecoa, Fifteen and Jamie’s Diner. According to Reuters, over 1,000 jobs are at risk.

The restaurant chains have been put ‘under administration’ of KPMG, meaning they now manage the ‘affairs, business and property of the companies’.

According to The Guardian, the international divisions are not at risk of closing.

‘I am deeply saddened by this outcome and would like to thank all of the staff and our suppliers who have put their hearts and souls into this business for over a decade. I appreciate how difficult this is for everyone affected,’ said Oliver.

‘I would also like to thank all the customers who have enjoyed and supported us over the last decade, it’s been a real pleasure serving you.

‘We launched Jamie’s Italian in 2008 with the intention of positively disrupting mid-market dining in the UK high street, with great value and much higher-quality ingredients, best-in-class animal welfare standards and an amazing team who shared my passion for great food and service. And we did exactly that.’

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Oliver gave millions of pounds to Jamie’s Italian to save it from bankruptcy. The sales had dropped by 11% and had to close 12 restaurants. In the years before, Oliver had to close his cookery shops, food magazine and other restaurants.

He has said that the problems are rooted in rising rents, business rates, food costs, and minimum wage levels.

Oliver opened his first restaurant, Fifteen, in London in 2002. He rose to fame in the late 1990s with his TV cooking show The Naked Chef. He went on to produce more TV shows, cookbooks and restaurants.

Featured image: Jamie’s Italian

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