Restaurant concepts that combine food and entertainment have suffered significant losses this year due to their reliance on on-premise sales. Prolonged closures of numerous locations have proven detrimental to Chuck E. Cheesewhich ended up filing for bankruptcy in June while Dave and Buster he fired hundreds of employees and was under bankruptcy surveillance for months.
The latest entertainment chain restaurant chain to file for bankruptcy is Punch Bowl Social, an all-in-one karaoke, arcade, event space, and food and drink venue that has been in trouble since March. The filing cited the devastating effects of the pandemic as the main reason for the company’s recession, CNBC reports. (Related: The saddest restaurant closures in your state.)
But Punch Bowl Social claims not to be aware of the deposit and questions its legality.
“The company had no prior knowledge of this filing from two former executives,” the company said in a statement. “We are currently unsure whether the deposit is legal and our secured lender, CrowdOut and legal counsel are currently working to resolve this issue.”
Founded in 2012, the chain was once “one of the most important concepts in the restaurant business,” according to Catering business, offering high-end food and games such as shuffleboard, bowling, ping pong, and pool. Over the years, the Denver-based company has grown to 20 locations in a dozen states, most of which have been closed since the start of the pandemic. Currently, only two locations remain open, one in Austin, Texas, and one in Atlanta, Georgia.
Although it was only awaiting success earlier this year, the chain began to unravel as the pandemic began. By March, the company had closed 19 locations and was in the process of being foreclosed when Cracker Barrel, one of its largest investors, refused to come to the rescue of the chain. Founder Robert Thompson left Punch Bowl Social soon after.
A bankruptcy hearing is scheduled for this week that will illuminate the future of the shaky chain.
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Mura is an assistant director who leads ETNT’s coverage of America’s favorite fast food and restaurant chains. Read more