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Wed 5th Jul 2023 - Prezzo receives court approval for restructuring plan
Prezzo receives court approval for restructuring plan: Prezzo, the Cain International-backed Italian dining group, has received approval from the High Court for its restructuring plan, which it said “brings to an end the strategic reshaping of the business”. The group’s restructuring plan was approved by the Honourable Mr Justice Richard Smith at the High Court this morning ( Wednesday,5 July). Smith concluded: “I am satisfied in all the circumstances of this case that the plan is a fair one.” The approval ends the strategic review the company announced this spring, which included the closure of 47 sites. Prezzo said it will allow the business to focus on securing a long-term, sustainable future across its now 97-strong restaurant estate. The company said the remaining sites have delivered “strong like-for-like sales in 2023”. The business said it is now “well positioned to cater to changing consumer habits”, with plans to continue its investment in menu excellence and range, “using high quality ingredients and the skill of talented chefs to deliver a menu that stands out in the casual dining market”. The plans are supported by Prezzo’s owner, Cain International, which it said remains committed to the long-term future of the business. Prezzo recently announced strategic partnerships with illy Coffee and Italian brewing company, Poretti, which is now available in more than 90% of its sites. Dean Challenger, chief executive of Prezzo, said: “This decision brings to an end our strategic review enabling us to focus on building a quality led, profitable and sustainable business. Our restaurants are in the right locations, offering quality food and drink to our customers, served by teams committed to delivering an exceptional customer experience.” Last week, it was revealed that HM Revenue & Customs had objected to Prezzo’s restructuring plan arguing that it was being used to avoid paying tax that the business owes, which stood at more than £11m. Bloomberg reported that Prezzo’s secured lenders, who get paid first in a restructuring, are owed around £24m, but Prezzo’s advisors at FRP Advisory think the business is unlikely to be worth more than £14m. That leaves very little left over for the likes of the taxman. The vast majority of the secured debt is held by Prezzo’s parent company. Around £32m owed to landlords would also be compromised. Prezzo features in the Propel Turnover & Profits Blue Book. Its turnover of £94,949,000 is the 79th highest in the database. The Blue Book ranks companies by turnover, profit and profit conversion, listing directors' earnings for the past five years. Companies can now have an unlimited number of people receive access to Propel Premium for a year for £995 plus VAT – whether they are an operator or a supplier. The single subscription rate is £495 plus VAT for operators and £595 plus VAT for suppliers. Email to upgrade your subscription.

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