“We’re doing maybe five years’ worth of closings in five months.”
It seems as if Ruby Tuesday has downsized considerably, closing about 147 restaurants since January 2020. Those locations have also been removed from the company website, according to a Business Insider report.
The report looked into AggData and compared how many Ruby Tuesday restaurants existed on January 23 with the locations found on April 20. They also looked for local news reports and it seems as if there were 147 closures. Confirmation was not forthcoming from Ruby Tuesday on the number of closures but they did say they had closed “select locations.”
A statement to the BI stated:
“During these uncertain times, and after careful consideration, we have made the decision to close select locations in an effort to better position our restaurants for future business. We value the dedication and hard work of all our employees and we greatly appreciate all those who support us. We will continue to work hard to make the Ruby Tuesday brand even stronger for the future.”
Aziz Hashim, the managing partner and founder of Ruby Tuesday, gave an interview with Restaurant Business Online. He cited the COVID-19 pandemic and said that many of those locations will be permanently closed.
“The final tally as to the permanent number of closures is to be determined for us,” he said. “Some of it depends on how quickly sales come back.”
Restaurant Business Online reports that the chain is currently operating “between 270 and 300.” According to Hashim, 180 locations are closed at this time but some of those closures are considered temporary. He does say that the COVID-19 pandemic has led to “accelerated” closures, although the company was planning on doing away with some of them due to faltering sales.
“We’re doing maybe five years’ worth of closings in five months,” he said.
Many restaurants, including Ruby Tuesday, did not have to pay rent in April, May, and June. Some of the locations may owe back rent from July, the report says.
“Starting in the third quarter, patience will wear out,” Hashim said. “There’s going to be a blood bath.”SKM: below-content placeholder