Uno's files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 24, 2010 4:04 pm
Debt burns bankrupt Uno pizza chain

http://www.bostonherald.com/business/ge ... zza_chain/

By Donna Goodison
Thursday, January 21, 2010 - Added 3d 16h ago



The Boston owner of the 179-restaurant Uno Chicago Grill chain filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection yesterday with plans to shed $142 million in debt in exchange for its bondholders gaining majority ownership.

Uno Restaurant Holdings Corp. said declining sales tied to the recession and increased costs resulted in net losses of $22.1 million and $15.1 million for the last two fiscal years despite belt-tightening, leaving the company unable to service its debt.

New York private equity firm Centre Partners Management bought controlling interest in Uno, known for its signature Chicago-style deep-dish pizza, in a 2005 leveraged buyout.

“It was a period of time when companies were bought with very little equity and an awful lot of debt,” Uno CEO Frank Guidara said. “If the economy didn’t head south, we would have been fine.”

Casual dining chains have taken a hit because diners have pulled back spending during the recession, said David Farkas, senior editor of Chain Leader magazine.

“The debt put on their books came to hurt them when customers in essence disappeared,” he said. “The chains couldn’t maintain that kind of top-line revenue they need to pay the principal and interest.”

Uno had long-term debt of $171.8 million as of Sept. 27. It had been in negotiations for 18 months before reaching the debt-for-equity deal that’ll give control to bondholders Twin Haven Capital Partners and Coliseum Capital Management. Uno also will seek court approval of a $52 million loan to see it through the reorganization.

Restaurants in Fairhaven, Kingston and Methuen were among 17 underperforming locations closed in the last two weeks. Others will continue operating, although Uno hopes to renegotiate some leases.

The company hopes to emerge from bankruptcy this spring.

dgoodison@bostonherald.com
"If you ain't on the road, you ain't makin' money!" - gregster

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 3:33 pm
The Boston owner of Uno's Chicago grill...

There seems to be some disagreement with geography here... call me cynical.

I had heard on numerous occasions from people who seemed to know, about how great a Chicago deep dish pizza was. Out of curiousity, I checked out an Uno restaurant that had recently opened in my area, and ordered their deep dish pizza. I was stunned at how bad it was, and was knowing that it certainly couldn't have been representative of a "real" Chicago deep dish pizza.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2010 6:14 pm
Damn. I guess their bankruptcy filing means they will not be buying my website (http://www.pizzereauno.com) to direct traffic to THEIR website. For $20 it was worth a shot in the dark. My method of madness was thinking of the many people who can not spell to save their lives. If Uno owned that website, they could still capture the potential business of these bad spellers. Oh-well.
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2010 12:37 am
When did you start that page?
"If you ain't on the road, you ain't makin' money!" - gregster

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