Italian restaurant owner and operator Bertucci’s Corporation filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on April 15, 2018. The case is pending in Delaware.
Bertucci’s was formerly known as NE Restaurant Company, Inc. It changed its name to Bertucci’s Corporation in August 2001. Founded in 1981, the company is based in Northborough, MA. Today Bertucci’s owns and operates a chain of 59 casual dining Italian restaurants in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.
A Bankruptcy Sale
The filing sets up a process to sell the company to Right Lane Dough Acquisition, LLC (an affiliate of Right Lane Capital) or an overbidder. The proposed purchase price is $1.7 million in cash and a “credit bid” of up to $4 million. In addition, the buyer will provide the company with exit financing in the form of $14 million in new second lien notes.
A Struggling Restaurant Market
Like others before it, Bertucci blames its bankruptcy filing on a proliferation of fast-casual restaurants and market oversaturation.
Bertucci’s, and the casual family dining industry generally, have suffered “a prolonged negative operating trend in an ever increasing competitive price environment.”
Since 2011, the company has experienced year-over-year declines in sales and revenue.
In fact, Reorg. First Day states that Bertucci’s is the third Massachusetts-based restaurant chain it has covered in recent years. The others were Boston-based fast casual restaurant Cosi and the Sagamore-based restaurant chain Bugaboo Creek Steakhouse.
The Committee Formation Meeting
The company states it owes roughly $9 million to vendors, landlords, and other unsecured creditors. The U.S. Trustee has scheduled a meeting to form a committee of unsecured creditors in the case. The meeting will take place at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, April 27, 2018. It will be held at the Delaware State Bar Association on 405 King Street, 2nd floor, in Wilmington, Delaware. If you would like a copy of the formation notice, it is available here.
The weather forecast? A very civilized high of 66 degrees. With mostly cloudy skies becoming partly cloudy later in the day. Because it is always partly cloudy in Delaware. Except when its raining. Or snowing.