PizzaExpress in Talks with Advisers as Financial Pressures Mount

Written by: Keith Tully

Published: 7th October 2019

Pizza Express logoThe restaurant chain PizzaExpress has entered into talks with advisors as it aims to avoid becoming the latest victim of financial pressures within the UK’s casual dining sector.

Businesses in the sector have been struggling to cope financially in recent quarters, with their costs having risen steadily and consumer habits tending towards increasing caution in terms of where and how they spend their money.

Now PizzaExpress bosses are taking advice on what they might do to address a situation that sees their business sitting more than £1 billion in debt.

There are several hundred PizzaExpress outlets across the UK, with the company’s debt pile meaning it has around £1.6 million worth of debt per restaurant.

The business was acquired by a Chinese private equity operation called Hony Capital in 2014, having opened its first restaurant in London in 1965.

With the company having to connect with its creditors to discuss its current financial situation, there are fears that the Italian food chain could soon be heading out of business or struggling to survive.

Earlier this year, the restaurant chain Jamie’s Italian, created by the celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, went into administration and saw the closure of 22 outlets across the country.

Other Italian eatery chains, including Prezzo, have been forced under financial pressures to reduce the number of restaurants they operate, while other well-known casual dining sector brands, including the burger chain Byron, have survived recent financial crises only after entering into Company Voluntary Arrangements (CVAs)

PizzaExpress is among the largest and longest-standing casual dining operations in the UK but its finances have been under pressure for some time, with its chief executive Jinlong Wang saying in a recent statement that he recognises his company has a “critical need to innovate”.

“Intense competition in the causal dining sector encourages innovation and we are constantly seeking ways to increase appeal to new and existing customers,” Mr Wang said after PizzaExpress posted profits down 7.7 per cent for the first half of this year.

“Looking ahead, whilst we expect both the UK and Ireland and International markets to remain challenging, we are confident in our ability to successfully appeal to customers and believe that we will continue to deliver a resilient performance across the remainder of 2019,” he added.

Keith Tully

Keith Tully

Join Keith Tully on Linked In Follow Keith Tully on Twitter

Keith has been involved in Business Rescue since 1992, during which time he’s worked for both independent and national firms. His specialties include company restructuring matters and negotiating with HMRC on his clients behalf.

Meet our Team of Experts
Director Support - Business suffering from Cash-Flow Problems?
If your company is financially distressed, we also offer the below services:
Business debt recovery

  • Recover Unpaid Invoices of £5k+
  • Expert Credit Control Services
  • Stop Late Payers & Bad Debts
Visit Site
Time to pay experts

  • Get Breathing Space with HMRC
  • Support with Business Tax Arrears
  • 35 Years HMRC Negotiation
Visit Site
UK Business Finance

  • Rejected for a CBILS Loan?
  • Get Emergency Business Funding
  • Supporting 1000+ UK Companies
Visit Site
Who we help
  • Company Directors
  • Finance Directors
  • Sole Traders
  • Accountants
  • Small Businesses
  • Large Businesses
  • Partnerships
Contact our team
Jonathan Munnery
Gillian Sayburn
Julie Palmer
or Find your Nearest Office

Here at Real Business Rescue we take your privacy seriously and will only use your personal information to contact you with regards to your enquiry. We will not use your information for marketing purposes. See PRIVACY POLICY

Business Rescue Advice for Directors
Free Guide for Limited Company Directors
Business Rescue Advice for Directors
  • How to manage company cash flow problems
  • Advice on dealing with HMRC
  • Understanding rescue and closure options
  • And much more...
Free Guide Download
Dealing with your Insolvent Clients
Business Rescue Guide for Accountants
Dealing with your Insolvent Clients
  • Helping you advise insolvent clients
  • Spotting signs of client distress
  • Exploring business rescue options
  • And much more...
Free Guide Download
Our numbers speak for themselves
Number of UK Offices
Directors Helped
Licensed Insolvency Practitioners

This site uses cookies to monitor site performance and provide a more responsive and personalised experience. You must agree to our use of certain cookies. For more information on how we use and manage cookies please read our PRIVACY POLICY