Coronavirus

Burger King warns it may shut 10% of sites

Burger King UK has warned it may be forced to permanently close up to 10% of its restaurants.

Speaking to the BBC, CEO Alasdair Murdoch said these closures could also lead to more than 1,600 job losses across its estate.  

He warned that government schemes “do not do enough” to help hospitality businesses keep afloat amid the effects of the pandemic, adding “I don’t think you can ever get over the top of this problem”.

Murdoch made the statements to BBC’s Newscast following the chancellor’s summer statement yesterday (8 July). 

In response to the new scheme, that will see the government subsidise 50% of restaurant bills for up to £10 per person in August, Murdoch said it was an “innovative approach” and expects Burger King to participate.

Nonetheless, he warned the chain could still be forced to close between 5% to 10% of sites in light of high costs, including rent payments, and loss of sales. 

Murdoch said: “If we can possibly avoid it, we will. We don’t want to lose any. We try very hard not to, but one’s got to assume somewhere between 5% and 10% of the restaurants might not be able to survive.

“It’s not just us – I think this applies to everyone out there in our industry. Some of these high streets, they’re not coming back.”

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