Mexican restaurant chain Wahaca is to close 10 of its 28 restaurants as a result of the coronavirus crisis impact.
The outlets which will permanently shut comprise: Bluewater, Kent; Bristol; Brixton, London; Charlotte Street, London; Chichester; Kentish Town, London; Liverpool; Manchester; Southampton; and St Paul’s, London.
Wahaca also reported it is considering a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) restructuring deal in order to facilitate its cost-saving plan.
The group said that over the last 4 months it had seen a ‘significant’ depletion of cash reserves due to the enforced closure and therefore had to raise new equity to allow it to reopen some sites.
As a result, a number of those restaurants have reportedly become untenable. Only branches that Wahaca has calculated will not lose money will be reopened.
The chain will now focus on strengthening the position of its remaining sites and returning to growth as the market recovers.
In an email to staff, the chain’s founders, Mark Selby and Thomasina Miers, said they will “try and save jobs” wherever possible.
They concluded their message to staff by saying: “This is genuinely the hardest email I have ever had to send and I am truly sorry that you are all recipients of it. I apologise unreservedly to those affected and once again thank you for everything you have done for us.
“While it is little conciliation please know that you have helped make Wahaca into the much-loved business it is today and you will be very much part of its history and its DNA. I do believe we will go on to achieve amazing things but today we pause and say thank you to all the amazing people leaving us. We will truly miss you all and ask you to please stay in touch.”