Craftworks Holdings — the Nashville, Tennessee-headquartered parent company of beer-centric chains Gorden Biersch, Rock Bottom, Old Chicago and Logan’s Roadhouse, as well as other smaller restaurant concepts — has laid off its nationwide staff of 18,000 people, according to Westword.
Employees were notified by email March 31st that their employment, as well as their healthcare benefits, were terminated.
Last month, Craftworks filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. The company permanently closed nearly 40 locations in the weeks before its bankruptcy filing.
Rather than offer takeout or delivery services, most locations shut down on March 18th, except for a few franchise-owned restaurants. At the time of its Chapter 11 filing, Craftworks had 261 company-owned locations in 29 states and Washington, D.C., across its various brands. The 77 franchise locations were not involved in the bankruptcy proceeding.
Westworld obtained a copy of the letter CEO Marc Buehler sent to workers informing them that their status with CraftWorks was changing from furloughed to unemployed.
“Due to the current state of affairs in the bankruptcy process, the Company’s existing benefit plans will be terminated effective March 31, 2020,” Buehler wrote. “Regrettably, because the plans are being terminated, there will be no COBRA continuation coverage available under the group health plans.”
In the letter, Buehler wrote that Craftworks plans to “work diligently towards a reopening date” and the company is “looking forward to the day when we hope to bring many of you back with a new suite of benefits.”