Italian restaurant chain Carluccio’s has been bought out of administration by the owner of Giraffe restaurants.
The deal saves 800 jobs and 30 sites, but 40 restaurants and more than 1,000 jobs will be lost, more than half the total workforce.
Administrators ARP said the coronavirus lockdown meant difficult decisions had to be taken.
New owners Boparan Restaurant Group also own Fishworks and Ed’s Easy Diner restaurants.
Until the sale, most of the company’s 2,000 employees were being paid through the government’s job retention scheme.
This allows for staff to be paid up to 80% of their salary.
“The COVID-19 lockdown has put incredible pressure on businesses across the leisure sector, so it has been important to work as quickly and as decisively as possible in an extremely challenging business environment to secure a sale,” said Phil Reynolds, Joint Administrator at FRP.
Satnam Leihal, managing director of Boparan Restaurant Group, described Carluccio’s as a “quality brand” and said good restaurants “will recover in the long term as people return to eating out”.
Before the outbreak it was hit by the crunch in the casual dining sector and recently urged the state to step in.