Yesterday (3 June) it was reported that an email sent from TRG's leisure arm, which includes the Frankie and Benny’s and Chiquito chains, said many sites were no longer viable to trade, and would remain closed permanently.
“The Covid-19 crisis has significantly impacted our ability to trade profitably, so we’ve taken the tough decision to close these restaurants now,” the email said.
“Unfortunately, unless there are any suitable alternative roles identified, it’s likely your role will be made redundant."
It has not yet been confirmed which sites will be closed, but between 2,000 and 3,000 employees could lose their jobs as a result.
Reports suggest that the Wagamama brand, which is also owned by TRG, will not be affected.
However, the closures are expected to impact brands from across the group's leisure arm, which also includes the Garfunkel’s and Coast to Coast chains.
TRG is currently one of the UK's largest restaurant operators, and at the end of 2019 had more than 650 pub and restaurant sites in its UK portfolio.
Prior to the pandemic the group's leisure arm was already facing a notable struggle, and in February announced that it was to cut the size of its estate from 350 sites to 260-275 by the end of 2021; a plan it has reportedly been “forced to accelerate” as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak.
The group has already closed 61 of its 80 Chiquito restaurants due to the pandemic, having placed the Tex-Mex chain in to administration in late March.
At the same time, TRG also appointed administrators for its 11-strong Food and Fuel gastropub group, with all sites closed permanently.