Sizzler Files for Bankruptcy

Sizzler is the latest national restaurant chain to suffer disastrous consequences from the ongoing global pandemic. The company announced Tuesday morning it was in the process of filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy, as it attempts to re-organize debts in order to keep the steakhouse chain afloat. In a statement released by the company, Sizzler attributed the coronavirus pandemic as the sole reason for the bankruptcy declaration.

As of now, the filing only impacts the 14 locations and not the 90-plus stores owned and operated by franchisees. Even then, Sizzler says it intends of keeping the locations it owns open during the debt restructuring process.

“The filing is a direct result of the financial impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the casual dining sector, particularly long-term indoor dining closures and landlords’ refusal to provide necessary rent abatement,” Sizzler USA — the parent company behind the chain — said in a statement.

In total, Sizzler USA operates 107 locations, with most of them falling on the western seaboard. The statement says as part of the filing, the company will be allowed to renegotiate leases with the landlords behind the dozen or so corporate-owned stores in an effort to get that overhead down.

“Today’s filing represents a new chapter for Sizzler and it’s an option we’ve undertaken based on the underlying strength of our 62-year-old legacy brand,” Sizzler USA president Chris Perkins added in the statement. “Many restaurant brands across the country have suffered because of COVID-19, and Sizzler USA is no exception.”

The company first started in 1958 as Del's Sizzler Family Steak House and is currently based in Mission Viejo, California.

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Earlier this month, the parent company behind Luby's and Fuddruckers announced plans to shutter after similarly poor numbers during the pandemic.

Cover photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty